Julie Leach won Michigan’s second highest Powerball jackpot, a whopping sum of $310.5 million. On Tuesday, Leach came forward to collect her prize and took the lump sum amount of $197.4 million in cash.
When asked what she would do with the large amount of money, she said she plans to take care of her family and children. “We used to say if we ever won the lottery, we wanted to buy a whole bunch of land and build all of our kids a home and basically have our own little community,” she said, as reported by CNN. “I’m going to take care of my kids. I don’t want them to have to work like I had to work and deal with the kinds of things I had to deal with over life. I just want to make it a good life for them, take care of them.”
She said she had bought the tickets on her way to work. “I worked a [night] shift and at about 6:30 at night I stopped to get my coffee and bought $20 worth of lottery tickets,” she said, adding that she checked the numbers on her ticket during her lunch break at McDonald’s. It was difficult to comprehend at first that she had won, so she went to the Aquatic Bathware plant to ask her co-workers to verify her winning.
Leach then went home, woke up her high school sweetheart and boyfriend of 36 years, Vaughn Avery. “He wanted to go to work. I said, ‘Are you crazy? We don’t have to work anymore,'” she said.
Speaking about her job at the fiberglass factory, she said it was “one of the dirtiest, nastiest jobs in there,” according to Chicago Tribune. Learning about her winnings, her children too may quit their jobs.
Avery said the family may take a trip to Hawaii and Alaska.
Leach’s winning numbers were 21, 39, 40, 55, 59 and Powerball 17. The highest amount ever won in the state’s Powerball jackpot was $337 million by Donald Lawson on August 15, 2002, ABC News reports.
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