Megan Markle's father once won $750,000 in the lottery -- and paid tuition at her private school with part of his winnings

  • Meghan Markle is preparing for her royal wedding to Prince Harry, which is just over a month away. 
  • A new biography on the "Suits" actor will be released soon, entitled "Meghan: A Hollywood Princess."
  • Meghan's father, Tom Markle, won $750,000 in the California State Lottery in 1990, according to an excerpt from the book published in The Sunday Times.
  • Though he has since declared bankruptcy, Markle used his lottery winnings at the time to pay tuition to his daughter's private school.

As Meghan Markle prepares to marry into the British royal family, her father's story may be one of riches to rags.

A new book about Prince Harry's fiancée — "Meghan: A Hollywood Princess" — includes details about the actor's life and childhood. Princess Diana's controversial biographer, Andrew Morton, wrote the in-depth biography about Markle, which will be published April 12. 

Included in the book and detailed in an excerpt published in The Sunday Times, is a story of how Meghan's father, Tom Markle, won the lottery when she was a child — and subsequently lost the money.

RELATED: 11 ways Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding will make history

11 PHOTOS
11 ways Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding will make history
See Gallery
11 ways Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's wedding will make history

Meghan Markle is an American

Meghan Markle is the first American to be officially engaged to a British royal. A few other firsts this bride-to-be checks off: she's a woman of color, divorced, a well-known actor, and was raised Catholic. Markle was just recently baptized and confirmed in the Church of England. After her wedding to Prince Harry, she will have to go through the process of becoming a citizen of the U.K. Don't miss these royal wedding etiquette rules every member of the family must follow.

(Getty)

The date

The day that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will exchange vows is May 19th, 2018, which breaks a couple royal traditions. To start, the wedding is on a Saturday. In the past, royal weddings have typically been held on a weekday. Queen Elizabeth II got married on a Thursday, Prince Charles and Princess Diana on a Wednesday, and Prince William and Kate on a Friday. Also, the wedding will be held on the same day as Britain’s historic soccer cup competition, the Emirates FA Final Cup. Prince William is the president of the Football Association and usually makes an appearance at the Final Cup. But this year, we guess he has other events to attend!

(Getty)

The cake

This is just a rumor, but there has been talk that the royal couple's wedding cake will be banana. Multi-tiered fruitcake has typically been the wedding cake choice of royal couples before them. Formal royal chef Darren McGrady said that Harry has always loved anything made with bananas, so it could be the chosen dessert at their wedding. Check out these other weird eating habits of the royal family.

(Getty)

It's not a holiday

When Prince Harry and Markle announced their engagement, the British government told the public that there "isn't a precedent in this area" for a bank holiday to be declared for the royal wedding. The date, however, falls on a Saturday, so it’s likely that crowds will still be able to gather to celebrate the royal nuptials.

(Getty)

It won't be as grand as previous royal weddings

Yes, in comparison to your average wedding, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding will be extremely grand. But in comparison to other royal weddings, it’s going to be much more low-key. Since Prince Harry is fifth in line to the throne, there’s less pressure for him to have a super traditional wedding. It’s going to be held in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle just outside of London, which is a little quainter than Westminster Abbey where Prince William and Kate wed. Don't miss these secrets about Windsor Castle you never knew.

(Getty)

There won't be a famous balcony kiss

Many recently married royal couples have kissed on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. However, since their ceremony is taking place at St. George’s Chapel, they likely won’t be making the hour-long trip back to London and Buckingham Palace to capture this classic royal moment.

(Getty)

There will be no procession through London

You probably guessed that this isn’t going to happen either. Since the couple likely won’t be coming back to London after the ceremony, there won't be a London procession for the public to congratulate them—however, Kensington Palace announced there will be a procession through Windsor directly following the ceremony at 1 p.m. local time. Find out the special flower that must be included in every royal wedding bouquet.

(Getty)

They invited the public to their wedding

Prince Harry and Markle want the public to feel as though they are a part of the celebration as much as possible—so they plan to invite 2,640 members of the public to watch them arrive and depart from St. George’s Chapel. Those lucky enough to be chosen to attend the royal wedding will be allowed onto the grounds of the castle for the nuptials.

(Getty)

There won't be as many dignitaries in attendance

Prince Harry and Markle want the public to feel as though they are a part of the celebration as much as possible—so they plan to invite 2,640 members of the public to watch them arrive and depart from St. George’s Chapel. Those lucky enough to be chosen to attend the royal wedding will be allowed onto the grounds of the castle for the nuptials.

(Getty)

There will be many more celebs in attendance

Prince Harry and Markle want the public to feel as though they are a part of the celebration as much as possible—so they plan to invite 2,640 members of the public to watch them arrive and depart from St. George’s Chapel. Those lucky enough to be chosen to attend the royal wedding will be allowed onto the grounds of the castle for the nuptials.

(Getty)

Meghan Markle's father may not escort her down the aisle

Meghan Markle is certainly not afraid to do her wedding her own way. Markle reportedly wants her mother, Doria Ragland, to walk her down the aisle. While this isn’t that much of a surprise given Markle's close relationship with her mother—and many brides have chosen to forgo the classic tradition of having their father walk them down the aisle—for a royal wedding, it’s definitely something new.

(Getty)

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

The elder Markle was known as a frequent purchaser of lottery tickets who spent thousands of dollars pressing his luck, according to Morton. He won the California State Lottery in 1990, "scooping $750,000 with five numbers, which included Meghan’s birth date," Morton wrote. Meghan was born on August 4, 1981.

With inflation, Markle's winnings would be worth about $1.5 million in 2018. Unfortunately, he eventually wound up filing for bankruptcy.

Tom Markle was a successful Hollywood lighting designer and was serving as the lighting director on the long running soap opera "General Hospital" when he met a makeup artist in training, Doria Ragland. Ragland became Markle's second wife and Meghan's mother, but the couple was already divorced by the time he won the lottery.

To avoid further financial difficulties from his divorce with Ragland, Markle sent a friend to pick up his lottery winnings from Chicago, according to The Times. Meghan's half-brother, Tom Jr., said that his father lost the bulk of the lottery prize when the same friend convinced him to invest a portion of his winnings into a jewelry business that later failed.

RELATED: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle together

86 PHOTOS
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle together
See Gallery
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle together
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend a Summer Party at the British Ambassador's residence at Glencairn House, during a visit to Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend a Summer Party at the British Ambassador's residence at Glencairn House, during a visit to Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend a Summer Party at the British Ambassador's residence at Glencairn House, during a visit to Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend a Summer Party at the British Ambassador's residence at Glencairn House, during a visit to Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 09: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex depart after attending the christening of Prince Louis at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace on July 09, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 09: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex depart after attending the christening of Prince Louis at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace on July 09, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 09: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex depart after attending the christening of Prince Louis at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace on July 09, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 22: (L-R) Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attend The Prince of Wales' 70th Birthday Patronage Celebration held at Buckingham Palace on May 22, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 22: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attend The Prince of Wales' 70th Birthday Patronage Celebration held at Buckingham Palace on May 22, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski - Pool/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (R), and his new wife, Britain's Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, attend the Prince of Wales's 70th Birthday Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in London on May 22, 2018. - The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall hosted a Garden Party to celebrate the work of The Prince's Charities in the year of Prince Charles's 70th Birthday. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex ride by carriage following their wedding at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales marries Ms. Meghan Markle in a service at St George's Chapel inside the grounds of Windsor Castle. Among the guests were 2200 members of the public, the royal family and Ms. Markle's Mother Doria Ragland. (Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle attend a Service of Thanksgiving and Commemoration on ANZAC Day at Westminster Abbey in London, Britain, April 25, 2018. Eddie Mulholland/Pool via Reuters
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his US fiancee Meghan Markle attend a service of commemoration and thanksgiving to mark Anzac Day in Westminster Abbey in London on April 25, 2018. - Anzac Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War. The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) landed at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I. (Photo by Eddie MULHOLLAND / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read EDDIE MULHOLLAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle lay a wreath at the Australian War Memorial during the Dawn Service at Wellington Arch to commemorate Anzac Day in London, Britain, April 25, 2018. Tolga Akmen/Pool via Reuters
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 25: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend the Anzac Day service at Westminster Abbey on April 25, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his US fiancee Meghan Markle arrive to attend a memorial service at St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square in London, on April 23, 2018, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the murder of Stephen Lawrence. - Prince Harry will attended a memorial on Monday marking the 25th anniversary of the racist murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence in a killing that triggered far-reaching changes to British attitudes and policing. The prince and his fiancee Meghan Markle joined Stephen's mother Doreen Lawrence, who campaigned tirelessly for justice after her son was brutally stabbed to death at a bus stop on April 22, 1993. (Photo by Victoria Jones / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read VICTORIA JONES/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his US fiancee Meghan Markle arrive to attend a memorial service at St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square in London, on April 23, 2018, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the murder of Stephen Lawrence. - Prince Harry will attended a memorial on Monday marking the 25th anniversary of the racist murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence in a killing that triggered far-reaching changes to British attitudes and policing. The prince and his fiancee Meghan Markle joined Stephen's mother Doreen Lawrence, who campaigned tirelessly for justice after her son was brutally stabbed to death at a bus stop on April 22, 1993. (Photo by Victoria Jones / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read VICTORIA JONES/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle arrive at a service at St Martin-in-The Fields to mark 25 years since Stephen Lawrence was killed in a racially motivated attack, in London, Britain, April 23, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 23: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend the 25th Anniversary Memorial Service to celebrate the life and legacy of Stephen Lawrence at St Martin-in-the-Fields on April 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive at the Royal Albert Hall to attend a star-studded concert to celebrate the Queen's 92nd birthday on April 21, 2018 in London, England. The Queen and members of the royal family are guests of honour at the celebration, which is being billed as The Queen's Birthday Party. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle take their seats at a star-studded concert to celebrate the Queen's 92nd birthday at the Royal Albert Hall on April 21, 2018 in London, England. The Queen and members of the royal family are guests of honour at the celebration, which is being billed as The Queen's Birthday Party. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive at the Royal Albert Hall to attend a star-studded concert to celebrate the Queen's 92nd birthday on April 21, 2018 in London, England. The Queen and members of the royal family are guests of honour at the celebration, which is being billed as The Queen's Birthday Party. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - April 21: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a reception hosted by Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia and his wife Lucy Turnbull at Australia House on April 21, 2018 in London, England. Celebrating the forthcoming Invictus Games Sydney 2018. PHOTOGRAPH BY Michael Dunlea / Barcroft Images (Photo credit should read Michael Dunlea / Barcroft Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive to attend the Invictus Games Reception hosted by Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia (R) and his wife Lucy Turnbull at Australia House on April 21, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Alastair Grant - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 21: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the Invictus Games Reception at Australia House on April 21, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 19: Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry speak with guests as they attend the Women's Empowerment reception hosted by the Foreign Secretary during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at the Royal Aeronautical Society on April 19, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 19: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry speak with guests as they attend the Women's Empowerment reception hosted by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at the Royal Aeronautical Society on April 19, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (L), Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee, US actress Meghan Markle (C), speak with guests at a reception for Women's Empowerment at the Royal Aeronautical Society in central London, on the fourth day of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) on April 19, 2018. (Photo by CHRIS JACKSON / POOL / Getty Images) (Photo credit should read CHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle, arrive to attend a reception with delegates from the Commonwealth Youth Forum in central London on April 18, 2017, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting (CHOGM). / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Yui Mok (Photo credit should read YUI MOK/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry (2R) and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle (C), arrive to attend a reception with delegates from the Commonwealth Youth Forum in central London on April 18, 2017, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting (CHOGM). / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Yui Mok (Photo credit should read YUI MOK/AFP/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 18: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend a reception with delegates from the Commonwealth Youth Forum during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre on April 18, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
BATH, ENGLAND - APRIL 06: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend the UK Team Trials for the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 at University of Bath on April 6, 2018 in Bath, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
BATH, ENGLAND - APRIL 06: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend the UK Team Trials for the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 at University of Bath on April 6, 2018 in Bath, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
BATH, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 06: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the UK Team Trials for the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 at the University of Bath on April 6, 2018 in Bath, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - MARCH 23: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Catalyst Inc, Northern Ireland�s next generation science park, to meet young entrepreneurs and innovators on March 23, 2018 in Belfast, Nothern Ireland. (Photo by Chris Jackson - Pool/Getty Images)
BELFAST, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 23: Prince Harry (R) and Meghan Markle interact with the crowd as they depart from to the Crown Liquor Saloon during their visit to Northern Ireland on March 23, 2018 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
LISBURN, NORTHERN IRELAND - MARCH 23: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit the Eikon Centre and attend an event to mark the second year of the youth-led peace-building initiative 'Amazing the Space' on March 23, 2018 in Lisburn, Nothern Ireland. (Photo by Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - FEBRUARY 13: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are seen during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle with Prince Harry on February 13, 2018 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Andrew Milligan - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - FEBRUARY 13: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Social Bite, a cafe that donates all profits to social causes, during their first official joint visit to Scotland on February 13, 2018 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/ WireImage)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, during their visit to Scotland. (Photo by John Linton/PA Images via Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive to attend the annual Endeavour Fund Awards at Goldsmiths' Hall in London, to celebrate the achievements of wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women who have taken part in sporting and adventure challenges over the last year. (Photo by John Stillwell/PA Images via Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle (L) arrive to attend the annual Endeavour Fund Awards at Goldsmiths' Hall in London on February 1, 2018. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attended the second annual Endeavour Fund Awards ceremony in London. The Endeavour Fund Awards celebrate the achievements of wounded, injured and sick veterans who have taken part in remarkable sporting and adventure challenges as part of their recovery and rehabilitation. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Ben STANSALL (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive to attend the annual Endeavour Fund Awards at Goldsmiths' Hall in London, to celebrate the achievements of wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women who have taken part in sporting and adventure challenges over the last year. (Photo by John Stillwell/PA Images via Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle (L) arrive to attend the annual Endeavour Fund Awards at Goldsmiths' Hall in London on February 1, 2018. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attended the second annual Endeavour Fund Awards ceremony in London. The Endeavour Fund Awards celebrate the achievements of wounded, injured and sick veterans who have taken part in remarkable sporting and adventure challenges as part of their recovery and rehabilitation. / AFP PHOTO / POOL AND AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALL (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)
CARDIFF, WALES - JANUARY 18: Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle sign autographs and shake hands with children as they arrive to a walkabout at Cardiff Castle on January 18, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a visit to Cardiff Castle. (Photo by Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images)
CARDIFF, WALES - JANUARY 18: Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle are seen during a walkabout at Cardiff Castle on January 18, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Karwai Tang/Karwai Tang/WireImage)
CARDIFF, WALES - JANUARY 18: Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle meet well wishers as they arrive to a walkabout at Cardiff Castle on January 18, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Ben Birchall - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
CARDIFF, WALES - JANUARY 18: Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle are seen during a walkabout at Cardiff Castle on January 18, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Neil Mockford/GC Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on January 9, 2018 in London, England. The Reprezent training programme was established in Peckham in 2008, in response to the alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialise through radio. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arriving for a visit to youth-orientated radio station, Reprezent FM, in Brixton, south London to learn about its work supporting young people. (Photo by Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images)
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry leave the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. (Photo by Joe Giddens/PA Images via Getty Images)
US actress and fiancee of Britain's Prince Harry Meghan Markle (L) and Britain's Prince Harry (R) stand together as they wait to see off Britain's Queen Elizabeth II after attending the Royal Family's traditional Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, eastern England, on December 25, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
(Left-right front) Lady Louise Windsor, the Duke of Edinburgh, (left-right centre) The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry arriving to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. (Photo by Joe Giddens/PA Images via Getty Images)
KING'S LYNN, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend Christmas Day Church service at Church of St Mary Magdalene on December 25, 2017 in King's Lynn, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - (L-R) US actress and fiancee of Britain's Prince Harry Meghan Markle and Britain's Prince Harry arrive to attend the Royal Family's traditional Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, eastern England, on December 25, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
KING'S LYNN, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 25: (L-R) Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend Christmas Day Church service at Church of St Mary Magdalene on December 25, 2017 in King's Lynn, England. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arriving for the Queen's Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace, London. (Photo by Jonathan Brady/PA Images via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 20: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive for the Queen's Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace on December 20, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle go on a walk about at Nottingham Contemporary on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle in May 2018. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle go on a walk about at Nottingham Contemporary on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle in May 2018. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
NOTTINGHAM, UNITED KINGDOM - DECEMBER 01: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair at Nottingham Contemporary on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor in May 2018. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Prince Harry and fiancee Meghan Markle attend the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair at Nottingham Contemporary on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle in May 2018. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee, US actress Meghan Markle gesture during their visit to Nottingham Academy in Nottingham, central England, on December 1, 2017. Prince Harry and his American actress fiancee Meghan Markle were welcomed by hundreds of people on their first royal visit as a couple since announcing their engagement this week. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Andy Stenning (Photo credit should read ANDY STENNING/AFP/Getty Images)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Prince Harry and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle pose for a photograph with the cast and crew of a hip hop opera performed by young people involved in the Full Effect programme at the Nottingham Academy school on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor in May 2018. (Photo by Matt Dunham - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Prince Harry and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle visit the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair at Nottingham Contemporary on December 1, 2017 in Nottingham, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement on Monday 27th November 2017 and will marry at St George's Chapel, Windsor in May 2018. (Photo by Adrian Dennis - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle greet wellwishers on a walkabout as they arrive for an engagement at Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham, central England, on December 1, 2017 which is hosting a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visited Nottingham in their first set of engagements together since announcing their engagement. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFF (Photo credit should read OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 27: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend an official photocall to announce their engagement at The Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 27: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend an official photocall to announce their engagement at The Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - NOVEMBER 27: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend an official photocall to announce their engagement at The Sunken Gardens, Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - NOVEMBER 27: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend an official photocall to announce their engagement at The Sunken Gardens, Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 27: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during an official photocall to announce the engagement of Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle at The Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 27: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during an official photocall to announce the engagement of Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle at The Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace on November 27, 2017 in London, England. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been a couple officially since November 2016 and are due to marry in Spring 2018. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 30: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are seen at the Closing Ceremony on day 8 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 at the Air Canada Centre on September 30, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 30: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are seen on day 8 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 on September 30, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the Wheelchair Tennis on day 3 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the Wheelchair Tennis on day 3 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend wheelchair tennis on day 3 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend wheelchair tennis on day 3 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry (R) and Meghan Markle (L) attend a Wheelchair Tennis match during the Invictus Games 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for the Invictus Games Foundation )
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the Wheelchair Tennis on day 3 of the Invictus Games Toronto 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for the Armed Forces. (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 25: Prince Harry (R) and Meghan Markle (L) attend a Wheelchair Tennis match during the Invictus Games 2017 at Nathan Philips Square on September 25, 2017 in Toronto, Canada (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for the Invictus Games Foundation)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Markle didn't lose all of his money from his friend's scam, however. He gave Tom Jr. money to start a flower shop, bought a car for his daughter Yvonne, and paid Meghan's tuition at a Catholic school with his winnings.

"If Meg marries Harry she’ll have won the lottery of life but dad winning the lottery helped us all," Tom Jr. told the Mail. "That money allowed Meg to go to the best schools and get the best training."

As a student at Immaculate Heart, Meghan was a star in the classroom and in drama class. She was also named Homecoming Queen at the private all-girls school. After graduating from the Catholic school, Meghan Markle earned a degree from Northwestern University.

After college, Meghan Markle — like her parents before her — made a living in television. She appeared as a briefcase model on the game show "Deal or No Deal" and has starred on "Suits" since 2011.

In 2016, Tom Sr. declared bankruptcy over $30,000. With little in savings and no income during retirement, the father of the royal-to-be is in a precarious financial position.

It is not uncommon for lottery winners to lose their fortunes and wind up with less money than they had before their winning ticket. The rise and fall of lottery winners often comes with massive spending sprees.

The royal wedding between Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will take place May 19.

See Also:

Read Full Story