A New Jersey woman and her seven daughters scooped a $429.6million Powerball jackpot after the winning numbers came to one if them in a dream. The winners, who invested just $6 to win the top prize, have been revealed as Pearlie Smith and her seven adult children, Valerie Arthur, Marsha, Jacqueline, Tracy, Rene, Katherine and Steven.
Family spokeswoman Valerie Arthur, the oldest sister, introduced siblings Marsha, Jackie, Tracy, Steven, Rene, Katherine and their mother Pearlie who all come from Trenton. Katherine lives in Newark.
“It was a big shock when we found out we were Powerball winners. It was a bigger shock when we learned we were the only ticket holder,” Arthur said during a press conference at New Jersey Lottery headquarters in Lawrenceville.
Pearlie,70, bought the winning ticket at the 7-Eleven store on Chambers Street in Trenton.
“It was like an affirmation of the dreams that each of us have,” Arthur said.
Arthur said the family is going to take a long trip and then consider their next move but added that the family’s first priorities are to pay off student loans and mortgages. They plan to tithe 10 percent of the money to their church.
Arthur, who retired after 27 years as a prison administrator for the Department of Corrections, said that once they learned they had won they hired an attorney who assembled a financial team to assess their needs and “help us deal with money.” They also wanted to be prepared to face the media and present themselves in the most positive way.