"I was going insane," Manuel Franco, second highest winner of US Powerball in history, said.
"I looked back at the three other numbers, they all matched. My heart started racing, my blood started pumping, I felt warm. I started screaming”, reacted Franco, when he found out that he had just become the second highest U.S Powerball winner in history.
Franco, of West Allis, Wisconsin, said that “he pretty much felt lucky” the day he bought his tickets. Rightly so, as he became $768 million richer, which is over R10.8 billion in South Africa, when he bought his winning quick pick ticket on March 27, at a Speedway gas station in the Milwaukee suburb of New Berlin. The gas station will receive $100 000 for selling the winning ticket.
Franco would’ve preferred to remain anonymous, however, Under Wisconsin law, winners cannot remain anonymous. "I'm ready and I know how to say no," as he prepares to get many people asking him for money. The $768 million U.S Powerball winner opted to take the lump-sum cash option of $447 million instead of the $768- million US annuity option that is paid over a period of 29 years. He has since quit his job and hopes to contribute some of his winnings to charity in the future.
The U.S Powerball winner will have to deal with the anxiety of having the news of his major winnings made public. However, there is some good news for those future lottery players hoping to win big one day - shortly, after a press conference with Franco, a bill was introduced which will allow all winners to remain anonymous. This will surely provide some relief to future winners as Franco stated, "I got that paranoia when you think the whole world is after you," he said. "I thought there was somebody behind me every single day. It's hard living your life when you have the ticket everybody wants".
We hope that Franco doesn’t let “the paranoia” stop him from spending his winnings and living his best life.