(Reuters) - An 81-year-old Rhode Island woman, who slept with her winning lottery ticket in a Bible, came forward on Tuesday to claim a $336.4 million PowerBall prize, one of the largest ever jackpots in the United States, lottery officials said.
Louise White kept her identity secret for weeks after buying the lucky ticket at a grocery store in Newport, Rhode Island, when a family member wanted some rainbow sherbet dessert.
She took the prize in one lump sum payment of $210 million, the highest cash jackpot ever, lottery officials said.
“I‘m very happy and I‘m very proud and this will make my family very happy. We are truly blessed,” White, a Newport resident, said during a brief appearance at a news conference.
White slept with the winning ticket in her Bible the night after the drawing and later kept it in a safe deposit box.
PowerBall is played in 42 U.S. states, Washington, D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The largest PowerBall jackpot was in 2006 for $365 million, according to lottery officials.
The odds of winning the PowerBall jackpot are roughly 1 in 175 million.
Reporting By Lauren Keiper; Editing by Sandra Maler and Will Dunham