The winner of a $189 million lottery jackpot has come forward, officials said, but his identity will remain a mystery to the public.
The Maryland Lottery said the winner turned in his ticket at lottery headquarters Friday after keeping the ticket in an unplugged lamp for more than a week. He purchased the ticket at the Dash-In convenience store on Quarterfield Road in Severn. The lottery said he is a frequent customer of the store, and bought ten of the Mega Millions tickets. The Dash-In store received a $100,000 commission from the sale.
He presented the ticket Friday with about a dozen members of his family. He told lottery officials that before buying about 10 tickets, he dreamed of his relatives saying the numbers, and he combined those numbers with his birth month, date and year.
"It’s like they were talking to me about the numbers in the dream,” he said, according to a press release. “I prayed, ‘Lord, if you want this money to belong to me, guide my hand."
The winner told lottery officials that he has set up a charity and will share the money with his extended family. He said he wept when he saw that the ticket had the winning numbers.
"Since the economy went down, our life has been tough,” he said.
The winner accepted the cash option and will take home about $86 million after taxes.