Fort Bragg soldier Johnny Charlestin was a $2 million winner in the Powerball drawing of the N.C. Education Lottery.
Charlestin, who lives in Spring Lake and is in the Army Reserve, found out he had won while he was celebrating his birthday Jan. 13. He claimed his winnings Tuesday.
"I didn't believe it, it was a feeling I'll never forget," Charlestin said in a news release issued by the lottery. "It's the best birthday present I've ever had."
Charlestin could not be reached for further comment. Lottery spokeswoman Kathleen Jacob said Charlestin indicated to lottery officials that he did not want any more publicity.
Charlestin is part of the U.S. Army Reserve Command that is headquartered at Fort Bragg. He bought his winning ticket for $3 at the Food Mart Express on Spring Avenue in Spring Lake.
To win the $2 million, Charlestin matched all five white balls on his ticket. The $1 million prize is automatically doubled for players with Power Play tickets.
For prizes greater than $5,000, 25 percent federal tax and 5.75 percent state tax are automatically withheld.
In all, the Jan. 13 lottery drawing resulted in 19 big wins in the state. Two tickets won $2 million, three tickets won $100,000 and 14 others won $50,000.
Jacob said there are two more $100,000 winners still to be named. One of the tickets was sold in Iredell County and the other was sold in Buncombe County, Jacob said.