Alex Trebek Ends Chemo

Image: Jeopardy!, Fair Use

“I believe in a higher power….he or she is busy enough looking after more serious problems in the world. But I don’t minimize the power of prayer.” – Alex Trebek

Jan 8, 2020

THE WRAP – Alex Trebek gave an update on the condition of his health Wednesday at the Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour.

Trebek told reporters at the Langham Huntington hotel in Pasadena:

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“Some days are better than others. My resistance is lower than most of you, of course, because of the treatments. I’ve been having chemotherapy as you can tell. I have a cold that seems to be going around, but this is the second time I’ve had it in the past month and a half.”

The longtime “Jeopardy!” host of 36 years has spoken openly about undergoing treatment for pancreatic cancer.

“They’ve got me off one of my chemo drugs which was killing me, and I won’t know until tomorrow when I go in for some more tests where things stand,” he continued. “Some weeks are good, some weeks are bad.”

Trebek remarked that he had seen some recently edited “Jeopardy!” episodes, and that he noticed he “seemed a little slower in the ad-lib portions.” He also pointed out that he was wearing a hairpiece, having lost his hair due to the chemo treatments.

Trebek was joined on stage by executive producer Harry Friedman, along with three competitors on “Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time”– Ken Jennings, James Holzhauer and Brad Rutter … Read more. 

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‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek doesn’t want pity: ‘You don’t owe me anything’

Jan 8, 2020
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USA TODAY, PASADENA, Calif. – When Alex Trebek talks about “Jeopardy!” he doesn’t want to talk about himself.

Promoting the long-running trivia show’s “Greatest of all Time” tournament at the Television Critics Association on Tuesday, Trebek urged reporters to stop asking questions about his legacy and his health and instead focus on the three players competing for the title of “Jeopardy! GOAT”: James Holzhauer, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter. The trio sat at his side.

“The reason we’re all here today is the ‘Greatest of all Time’ tournament. Because of these guys,” he said.

But Trebek, a beloved TV icon who has made headlines for his public battle with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer, was still the center of attention as he reflected back on three decades of hosting the quiz show.

“My success to a great extent has depended on the success of the game,” he said. “There are some individuals who could have been named hosts of ‘Jeopardy!’ and, if the show had lasted 36 years, they would have enjoyed the same kind of favorable reviews and adulation that I have enjoyed in recent years. And I don’t want to minimize it, either, but my health situation has contributed to that a great deal. The pity factor … is out there and people have been so kind, sending prayers and good thoughts and all of that. So I’m not unaware of that … ” Read more. 

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‘Jeopardy!’ Host Alex Trebek Says If ‘Cancer Won’t Kill Me, The Chemo Will Kill Me’

Jan 2, 2020

NEWSWEEK – Alex Trebek gave audiences an update on his ongoing battle with pancreatic cancer during the ABC special What is Jeopardy? on Thursday night.

During an interview with former Live! With Michael and Kelly and current GMA3 host Michael Strahan, Trebek revealed that some days are better than others but he continues to fight the disease.

He spoke about the moment a contestant wrote “We Love You Alex” as an answer during a round of Final Jeopardy.

“I read it first, and then I got choked up because it kind of registered with me,” Trebek said.

Trebek spoke candidly about the process of his diagnosis, which came after strong stomach pains. “I knew as soon as the doctor came back and mentioned the pancreas, ‘Uh oh, this is going to be cancer.'”

“It’s part of life. Does that mean I’m courageous because i’m dealing with it? No. Maybe I am courageous,” Trebek said, adding sarcastically, “Way to go, Alex.”

He spoke about the ongoing process of chemotherapy, which initially produced encouraging results, saying “The cancer won’t kill me, the chemo will kill me.”

Trebek added that he’s been seeking alternative and experimental treatments for the cancer. “I don’t know what comes next. Let’s go for it.”

“For me, it’s when i see him in pain and I can’t help him,” said Jean Trebek, Alex Trebek’s wife of over 20 years. “When he doesn’t eat right. When he has too much diet soda.”

“When you get to be 79 and be in as good a shape as I… oh darn it!” Alex Trebek joked. “Blew it, Alex.” He admitted she has to “tread lightly” around him when he’s in severe pain.

He also addressed matters of faith and mortality.

“I believe in a higher power….he or she is busy enough looking after more serious problems in the world. But I don’t minimize the power of prayer,” he said.

“Most of us have an open ended life. It’s no longer an open-ended life, it’s a close-ended life,” he said, given the poor survival rate for pancreatic cancer.

“I’m not sure I always have this positive frame of mind.” He later admitted, “My self-deprecating humor is worth its weight in gold.”

Trebek said during the special that he doesn’t know when his last show will be, and that he hopes to stay with the show as his skills aren’t diminished.

“It’ll be a significant moment for me … ”


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