Longtime Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek passed away on Sunday, November 8, after battling with pancreatic cancer.
The show’s Twitter account posted, “Jeopardy! is saddened to share that Alex Trebek passed away peacefully at home early this morning, surrounded by family and friends. Thank you, Alex.”
Many celebrities and former Jeopardy! winners took to social media to express their condolences and tribute. Ken Jennings, former Jeopardy! champ shared on Twitter, “Alex wasn’t just the best ever at what he did. He was also a lovely and deeply decent man, and I’m grateful for every minute I got to spend with him.”
Jeopardy! is saddened to share that Alex Trebek passed away peacefully at home early this morning, surrounded by family and friends. Thank you, Alex. pic.twitter.com/Yk2a90CHIM— Jeopardy! (@Jeopardy) November 8, 2020
Meanwhile, Seth Meyers tweeted, “RIP to a great giver of joy and knowledge.”
In March 2019, Trebek announced that he was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer. He said, “Just like 50,000 other people in the United States each year, this week I was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer. Now, normally the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I’m going to fight this and I’m going to keep working and with the love and support of my family and friends and with the help of your prayers also, I plan to beat the low survival rate statistics for this disease.”
The game show host admitted that he suffered from great pain and depression but his wife, Jean Trebek, was there to help him all the time.
“But I brushed that aside quickly because that would have been a massive betrayal — a betrayal of my wife and soulmate, Jean, who has given her all to help me survive,” he said one time he gave an update about his condition. “It would have been a betrayal of other cancer patients who have looked to me as an inspiration and a cheerleader of sorts of the value of living and hope. And it would certainly have been a betrayal of my faith in God and the millions of prayers that had been said on my behalf.”
Trebek released a memoir, The Answer Is…Reflections on My Life, in 2020 where he mentioned he wasn’t afraid of dying. He also admitted speaking to his family that if chemotherapy wasn’t successful, he would stop his treatments.
“Quality of life was an important consideration. … One thing they’re not going to say at my funeral as part of the eulogy is, ‘He was taken from us too soon’” he wrote. “I’m about to turn 80. I’ve lived a good, full life, and I’m nearing the end of it. I know that. The only thing that might bother me is if I pass on before I get to have grandchildren. (Hint, hint.)”
Trebek is survived by his wife Jean and children, Matthew, 30, and Emily, 27.