Shares millions with his daughters
By Todd Northrop
North Carolina's newest jackpot winners are members of a Greenville, N.C. family who claimed today their half of the Sept. 30 Mega Millions jackpot worth $114 million.
Half of the jackpot, $57 million, goes to James Jones, a retired banker from Greenville. Jones chose the lump sum option rather than the annuity and will receive $42.2 million.
Jones will split the winnings with his two daughters, Allan Jones of Greenville and Kimberly Jones, a high school teacher from Buford, Georgia. After taxes Jones will take home $20 million, while his two daughters will receive $4.3 million each.
Twelve days ago Jones purchased the winning ticket at the Kangaroo Express on Greenville Boulevard.
The jackpot that night was actually $114 million, and a second winning ticket was sold in California. So far that half of the jackpot has not yet been claimed.
"For my family, it will mean the ability to finish the education of our grandchildren and their grandchildren" said James Jones. "For my daughters, it will certainly mean a less stressful financial life and the ability to follow their life ambitions. As for my wife and I, it will certainly not change much in our lives as we now live comfortably and have no needs or want for many more worldly things."
Jones said the family plans to invest and save the money for "future generations" and support worthy charities.
Jones bought five $2 Mega Millions tickets on the Friday afternoon before the drawing was held. He discovered he had matched all five white balls and the Mega ball on Saturday morning.
"Unbelievable," said Jones of the feeling when he discovered his good luck. "It was truly unbelievable. After I had checked enough to convince myself I really had won, it was exciting. And a little bit scary."
The Kangaroo Express has received a $50,000 incentive award for selling the winning ticket.
North Carolina has been lucky in winning jackpots in the nation's two multistate jackpot games — Mega Millions and Powerball. Five jackpots have been won in North Carolina since the N.C. Education Lottery began five years ago. The Jones family's jackpot win was the second in the Mega Millions game since it began here on Jan. 31, 2010. Mike Manheim, a retired businessman from Greensboro, won a $12 million Mega Millions jackpot on May 28, 2010.
The three Powerball jackpot winners were Jackie Alston of Halifax who won $74.5 million in November 2006; Jeff Wilson of Kings Mountain who won $88.1 million in June 2009; and Frank Griffin of Asheville who won $141.4 million in February 2010.
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