95°F
weather icon Clear

New Jersey man wins $315M Powerball jackpot, quits job

TRENTON, N.J. — The New Jersey accountant who held the sole winning ticket for last month’s $315.3 million Powerball jackpot said Friday he had just refinanced his home in order to send his daughter to college.

Tayeb Souami was introduced Friday during a news conference at lottery headquarters. The 55-year-old Little Ferry man was an accountant for a food importing company, but has since quit his job.

“This is big. I am very emotional right now. I like the numbers and I always play with those numbers,” he said.

Originally from Africa, Souami came to the United States in 1996. The married father of four decided to take the money in a lump sum, so he’ll get slightly more than $183 million after taxes.

Souami had bought two tickets for the May 19 drawing at a ShopRite grocery store in Hackensack when he was returning something.

He found out he was the winner the next day. He said was on his way to a carwash when he saw a 7-Eleven and stopped in to check his Powerball tickets.

“When I went inside, I scanned the first ticket and it wasn’t the winner. The second ticket was good but the machine said it must be seen by the retailer,” he said.

“The clerk kept saying, ‘Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God,’ ” he said, adding his heart was beating out of his chest “just like a ‘Tom and Jerry’ cartoon.”

Souami said he was so nervous after realizing he won that he had trouble driving home.

He said he will talk to a financial advisor about what to do with the money, but added that one of the first things he will do is take care of his family, especially when it comes to the education of his two children.

He refinanced his house in order to send his 17-year-old daughter to college, he said, and had received the check just a week before winning.

This marks the second major lottery win in New Jersey this year. A Vernon man won a $533 million Mega Millions jackpot in March.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Infighting prompts NRA’s top lobbyist to resign

The National Rifle Association’s top lobbyist resigned Wednesday, the latest development in a dizzying array of in-fighting within the gun lobbying group in recent months that has ensnared even its most ardent loyalists.

Wayfair workers protest the company’s contract with migrant detention center

Employees at online home furnishings retailer Wayfair planned a walkout Wednesday to protest the company’s decision to sell $200,000 worth of furniture to a government contractor that runs a detention center for migrant children in Texas.

Graves of American WWII servicemen found on remote Pacific island

A nonprofit organization that searches for the remains of U.S. servicemen lost in past conflicts has found what officials believe are the graves of more than 30 Marines and sailors killed in one of the bloodiest battles of World War II.

Kremlin confirms Trump-Putin ‘sidelines’ meeting at G-20

Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet with U.S. President Donald Trump on the sidelines of an international summit in Japan, the Kremlin said Wednesday, in talks that come amid bitter differences.

2 more deputies fired for response to Parkland shooting

Two additional deputies have been fired as a result of an internal affairs investigation into the agency’s response to the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that killed 17 people, the Broward County sheriff said Wednesday.