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Former US Marine Wins Powerball

Last Updated: Friday 6th October 2006, 16:39 pm

The September 23 Powerball lottery jackpot of $200 million has been claimed recently by a couple from Iowa. Former US Marine Tim Guderian and his wife Kellie had purchased three tickets from a store in Fort Dodge, where Tim now works as a car dealer, and although the odds of winning the draw were just 1 in 140 million, lady luck rewarded the couple with the top prize.

The couple are no strangers to playing the Powerball lottery, but winning the jackpot wasn't really something they anticipated. "We played the lottery about twice a month but never expected to win," Tim Guderian said. "We had bought the Powerball ticket the Saturday of the drawing on our way to visit our parents - we had stopped to buy a [soda] pop and decided to buy a ticket as well."

Tim and Kellie didn't realise that they had won the gargantuan jackpot until the next day, when they stumbled across the lottery results in a newspaper. Kellie describes what happened when the checked them against their ticket: "I held the ticket and Tim read off the numbers and all I could say was, 'Oh my gosh, oh my gosh!'"

In contrast with recent Mega Millions $163,000,000 winner Ben Chason, who hopped into his car and headed for the claims office as soon as he discovered his good fortune, the Guderians were a lot more cautious about stepping into the limelight.

"We have been in shock ever since [discovering the win]," Kellie said. "Winning this amount of money is simply overwhelming. We have been working with a financial planner and an attorney so that we can manage these winnings in a responsible way."

Powerball Jackpot winners are given a choice between taking $200,000,000 in the form of annuity payments, or a single lump sum. After taking financial advice, Tim and Kellie opted for a lump sum of $95,974,824.

The couple are now planning the best way to spend and invest their winnings, and have already decided to support a number of charitable organisations and projects. Kellie said: "We believe that we should share some of our good fortune. We believe it's the right thing to do."

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