$1.5B lottery winner vows to donate to South Carolina charities, including Hurricane Florence relief

Thursday, March 14, 2019
MegaMillions winner comes forward in South Carolina
MegaMillions winner comes forward in South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The woman who won the second largest lottery jackpot in American history will donate some of her winnings to Hurricane Florence relief efforts.

The winner remains anonymous, but her lawyer released some information about her intentions with the money.

Attorney Jason Kurland said the winner plans to give a lot of the money back to the state of South Carolina. The charities specifically named include One SC Fund (specifically for Hurricane Florence Relief), Ronald McDonald House of Charities of Columbia, In The Middle, City of Simpsonville Art Center, and American Red Cross Alabama Region (specifically for Tornado Relief Fund).

Kurland said the winner bought the ticket on a whim. She was taking a scenic drive when signs showing the $1.5 billion jackpot caught her eye.

Related: 10 largest lottery jackpots in history

She walked into the KC Mart and bought a ticket.

When she checked her numbers the morning after the Oct. 23, 2018 drawing, she stared motionless at the ticket. Eventually, she started jumping and screaming for joy.

"Words can't describe the feeling of such incredible luck," the winner said. "I do realize that such good fortune carries a tremendous social responsibility, and it gives me a unique opportunity to assist, support and contribute to charities and causes that are close to my heart."

The winner spent time researching the right way to claim her winnings and keep her anonymity.

"I want to make sure I make all of the right decisions, which is why I have taken this amount of time to collect my prize."