Updated on January 16, 2023 by Ray Olsen
Marie Holmes was a single mom and she worked hard to support her family. But in 2015 Marie’s life changed drastically when she won the US Powerball jackpot. Her life seemed to have turned around for the better after she became a millionaire but she recently made headline news and unfortunately it wasn’t for a good reason.
Holmes couldn’t enjoy her winnings for long because of her jailbird ex-fiance. There’s a lot more to Marie’s story that I think you might find interesting. Read on to find out what Marie’s life was like before she won the jackpot, why she made headline news, and where she is today.
Marie is from Shallotte which is a town 15 miles from the South Carolina border. Before her win, she was a 26-year-old single mom of four children and worked several jobs to support her family. She worked at KFC, Food Lion, Walmart, Subway, and McDonald’s simply to make ends meet. At the time she was staying with her then-fiance.
Holmes struggled immensely to support her family financially and to make matters worse one of her children was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. But Marie Holmes’ luck was about to change for the better.
Marie’s mom purchased a lottery ticket for her when she was on her way to church. Holmes stated that she was busy making her children breakfast when she saw the draw numbers on Facebook. She compared the numbers on her screen to the numbers on her ticket and realized she had the winning numbers!
Holmes was one of three winners to win the $564 million US Powerball jackpot. Her share was a whopping $188 million. Marie chose the lump sum option and took away $87.9 million after taxes.
The US Powerball draw numbers were 5, 11, 54, 13, and 39, with a Powerball of 19 and Marie had all of them on her ticket. She became one of the biggest lottery winners in her hometown. Holmes didn’t use a specific lottery strategy to play the game. She simply gave her mom $15 and asked her to buy a lottery ticket. The draw was on the 23rd of February 2015 and Marie only saw the winning numbers the next day.
Marie relied solely on luck to win the US Powerball jackpot and her instincts were right. The chance of winning the US Powerball is 1 in 292,201,338 so she can thank her lucky stars for winning such a huge prize. What’s more, it was the highest jackpot to be won in South Carolina at the time.
Marie Holmes stated that after she realized she had the winning numbers she almost had a heart attack. She also said she ran outside and screamed out of pure joy. The first person Marie called was her mom to tell her the good news.
Holmes started calling other members of her family to them about her win but they simply didn’t believe her. Her sister asked her to send her proof that she had won and her uncle asked her to stop playing games.
In an ABC News article, Marie Holmes stated she wanted to travel and put money aside for her children. She also wanted to donate money to her church and an organization that cared for people with cerebral palsy in honor of her son who has the same neurological disorder.
Although Marie Holmes’ luck changed she was also having some trouble in paradise. She started dating Lamar McDow and according to WECT News reports Marie spent over $1.8 million on McDow buying him expensive clothes, cars, and accessories.
According to the same news report, Marie Holmes also bought a $250,000 house and lived there with Lamar for a year. Unfortunately, Lamar was arrested several times due to heroin drug trafficking but got out on bail thanks to Marie. He kept getting arrested and Marie kept bailing him out. She spent $1 million on his first bail, $6 million after his second arrest, and $12 million after his third.
In 2017, Marie ended her relationship with Lamar as he was in prison at the time. Marie Holmes decided to sell all the items and assets she had bought Lamar and started dating someone else. In 2021, Marie made the news when it was reported that Lamar was suing the jackpot winner for giving away his assets without his consent.
A private investigator had to track Marie Holmes down to serve her the lawsuit papers. According to a Washington Post article, Holmes’ attorney stated that the gifts that were bought for Lamar weren’t truly his as they were purchased by Marie.
She was also sued by her pastor for $10 million. There are no other reports on whether Marie Holmes won the court case or not.
Marie Holmes did have a Facebook account before she became a lottery winner but she may have deleted her account for privacy reasons. There is a Twitter account in Marie Holmes’ name but it seems to be a fake profile. It’s advised that people refrain from giving out personal details to people who claim to be lottery winners on social media. They’re most likely scammers.
When people win the lottery jackpot it’s advised that they get a team of financial advisers to help them manage their finances especially if they take the lump sum option. Unfortunately, Marie Holmes started spending her money frivolously without managing her money correctly.
Furthermore, financial experts suggest that lottery jackpot winners should wait six months before making drastic lifestyle changes such as quitting their job and buying a large house. Although it’s understandable that Marie would want to quit all of her jobs so she could travel and spend time with her family.
There are several things Marie Holmes could have done differently. First, she should have stayed anonymous for as long as possible. Second, she should never have spent so much money on bailing her fiance out of jail as he was clearly a lost cause.
Marie Holmes should have invested her money to make it grow instead of spending it on people that didn’t appreciate her. It’s understandable that someone that’s new to having large sums of money may not handle their finances well. That’s why Marie should have gotten a team of professionals to help her manage her money.
Marie Holmes didn’t have a method to win the US Powerball jackpot. She simply gave her mom $15 to spend on a lottery ticket and relied on luck to win the draw. She was one of three winners of the US Powerball jackpot.
Marie Holmes was living in an undisclosed location with a new partner but has recently made the news. She was sued by her ex-fiance for giving away the gifts and assets she purchased for him while they were together. There is no status on the court cases at present.
Pastor Kevin claimed that Marie caused him emotional stress when she didn’t give him some of her winnings to build a retreat center. Kevin stated that they had a verbal contract agreement but no papers were signed. The pastor sued Marie for $10 million.
Although Marie Holmes was incredibly lucky to win the US Powerball jackpot she hasn’t been able to maintain her finances. She spent millions on bailing her ex-finance out of prison and also faced a lawsuit from her own pastor. I sincerely hope that Marie uses the remainder of her lottery winning wisely before she becomes bankrupt.
Marie Holmes is the perfect example of what not to do if you ever become a lottery jackpot winner. Lottery winners should create a team of professional financial advisors to help them manage their winnings and to invest their money wisely.