Man comes forward to claim 3rd-largest jackpot in US lottery history

Manuel Franco has been buying Powerball tickets since he turned 18.

It’s paid off.

Now 24, the Wisconsin resident is taking home the third-largest jackpot in US lottery history.

Franco bought the winning ticket to the massive $768.4 million Powerball on March 27 at a Speedway gas station in New Berlin, Wisconsin.

“I walked into the Speedway and I purchased $10 worth of individual Powerball tickets,” Franco said at a news conference on Tuesday. “I honestly felt so lucky that I did look up at the camera and I wanted to wink at it cause I just had that lucky feeling.”

The lucky winner chose to receive a lump sum of $477 million, though he was at first leaning toward the annuity payments.

He said he was ecstatic when he found out about his good fortune.

“I was going insane,” Franco said. “My heart started racing. I screamed for about 5 or 10 minutes.”

He went into work the next day, but was sweating profusely and barely able to hide the good news from his coworkers. He soon quit his job.

Franco said he doesn’t yet know what the next chapter in his life holds, but he wants to take his time and ensure he doesn’t make any bad decisions. He has set up a legal and financial team to help him.

“I want to take a break, let it sink in,” Franco said. “I do want to help out the world but I want to make sure my future is secure.”

Wisconsin does not allow lottery winners to remain anonymous. The Speedway that sold the ticket will receive $100,000.