While winning the lottery may be a dream come true for many people, but for Marie Holmes, fortune soon became a source of nightmares.
Sued by her pastor
Upon taking home a lump sum of $127 million from her total Powerball win of $188 million, this struggling mom had big plans. She wanted to ensure her kids' education was taken care of, and she also donated some money to a local pastor, Kevin Matthews, who often counseled and helped her.
Mathews then sued her for $10 million for reneging on a verbal contract. According to Matthews, he and Holmes had planned to use $1.5 million to purchase land where he intended to build a retreat facility.
He said he had visited her home not long after the lottery win and Holmes promised to give him the $1.5 million he needed. However, while Holmes had donated $700,000 to the pastor's church already, she was unable to give him the $1.5 million she promised.
Her accountant later explained to Matthews that they had changed their mind about the money, but the pastor believed that it was Holmes' aunt who had discouraged her. An upset Matthew then sued her for $10 million, a lawsuit which he eventually won.
A string of bad decisions?
They say more money, more problems and Holmes soon learned that the hard way. Apart from having to pay millions to Pastor Matthews, Holmes also coughed up about $21 million bail money for her boyfriend, Lamarr McDow, who was arrested four times over drug-related charges.
McDow had a long criminal history, which included assault and drug possession. He was charged with trafficking heroin and, while the name of the person who bailed him could not be confirmed, it was believed that his rich girlfriend must have stepped in.
Iyanla to the rescue
In 2016, Iyanla Vanzant, host of the show 'Fix My Life', learned about Holmes' story and decided to help her out. Her purpose was to help the lottery winner sort out her life and give her the tools she needed to go forward.
We hope Holmes is in a better and calmer place, now, after all the stress and drama her lottery win brought to her.