A single mom who won $343.9 million in a recent Powerball drawing announced Wednesday that she'll be giving a half million of her jackpot to a foundation that assists wounded veterans.
Lerynne West, 51, of Redfield, Iowa, told Ellen DeGeneres her story: how a single mother of three who just bought her first home took a break from unpacking to get a slice of pizza at Casey's convenience store and purchased a lottery ticket.
After she was publicly named the winner last week, West announced the formation of The Callum Foundation, named after her grandchild who survived one day after he was born. The foundation will focus on financing work dealing with poverty, education, animal welfare and veterans.
On the syndicated "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," West said her dad was a Vietnam veteran and that her three brothers served in the military.
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That made her decide to donate $500,000 to The Travis Mills Foundation, which supports veterans and their families through long-term programs that help them overcome physical obstacles, strengthen their families and provide rest and relaxation.
"It's very important to me that we never forget the sacrifices soldiers and their family members make for our country," West said.
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