LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) - Meet America’s newest member of the super rich. He's 44-year-old Donald Lawson of Lapeer.
"I'm going to escape for now," says Lawson. "And go somewhere safe and think about it, and go from there."
Lawson, who calls himself a "hillbilly from Arkansas", was the sole winner of this month’s $337M Powerball jackpot.
He found out he won when a friend called him the morning after the drawing to tell him the winning ticket was sold at the Sunoco gas station in Lapeer where he lives. He then checked the numbers online.
“I kind of lost my breath," said Lawson, who was introduced to the media by Michigan Lottery officials.
Lawson, surrounded by his mom, sister and brother-in-law says he is a frequent lotto player who may have had some help from above this time around. He says his hand was guided to the winning numbers.
Lawson says a couple of hours after realizing he had won, he called his boss to say he would not be coming to work for the midnight shift. The now former railroad engineer is retired, and so are some of his closest family members.
“The rest of my family is going to be taken care of," said Lawson.
Before turning in the winning ticket, Lawson says he hid it inside his bible, under his couch, and on top of the fridge.
Lawson, a father of two, says he plans to move and to travel, and still be cautious about money.
He’ll take the cash option of $224M before taxes so he’ll end up with $158.7M.
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