Reported by Liku Zelleke
Marie Holmes, the North Carolina woman who won the $188 million lottery jackpot at the start of this year has been in a beneficial mood: she just gave about $700,000 of her winnings to her local church.
Last February, Holmes had opted to take a lump sum of her Powerball winnings which gave her a payment of $127 million.
According to her representative, Ruth Sheehan from the Francis Law Firm, Holmes, 26, had made plans to share her winnings right from the outset.
“The first thing she promised was to tithe – or give a tenth of her winnings to charity,” Sheehan said in a prepared statement.
It was in keeping that promise that Holmes gave around $700,000 to her church, the Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church. The church said it would use the money to cover repairs and renovations that the church and its equipment needed badly and was long overdue.
Before she won her life-changing prize, the mother of four young children had worked at jobs in Walmart and McDonalds.
Following her win Holmes, talking to reporters, had said, “Everything is for them. All the struggles that I went through it was all for them. I just want them to understand that money doesn’t change you. It can help you. They don’t have to worry about that. They can go to college, on me. And they don’t have to worry about nothing. I’m glad I can do that for them.”
While this is some great news coming from Holmes, it isn’t the only time she has hit the headlines since winning her prize. In October, her boyfriend Lamarr Andre McDow went to jail – for the third time in a year – and she shelled out over $9 million to pay for his bail.
She, herself, was in the news after she got arrested at her Brunswick County home when she was caught with a small amount of marijuana in her possession.