Alex Trebek, Longtime ‘Jeopardy!’ Host, Dead at 80

Television’s consummate quizmaster dies “peacefully” after lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer


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Alex Trebek, television’s consummate quizmaster and the organize of Jeopardy! because that 35 years, passed away Sunday morning in ~ the period of 80 following a prolonged battle through cancer.

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Jeopardy! is saddened come share that Alex Trebek passed away peacefully in ~ home early on this morning, surrounding by family and friends,” the present tweeted. “Thank you, Alex.”

Jeopardy! is saddened to share the Alex Trebek passed far peacefully in ~ home at an early stage this morning, surrounded by family and also friends. Say thanks to you, Alex. Pic.twitter.com/Yk2a90CHIM

— Jeopardy! (
Jeopardy) November 8, 2020

Trebek revealed his pancreatic cancer diagnosis in march 2019. In spite of the prognosis, Trebek vowed to proceed working even as he fought the disease. “Truth told, I have actually to,” Trebek added, v a wink that humor. “Because under the regards to my contract, I have to host Jeopardy! for three more years! So help me. Keep the faith and also we’ll win. We’ll acquire it done.”

As the host of Jeopardy!, Trebek came to embody a wholly distinctive kind of intellectualism. He stood behind a lectern, sported a professorial mustache because that years and projected a mix the wisdom and also trustworthiness — a not-quite know-it-all who had all the answers in former of him, but could still gain away through a cunning quip if a contestant flubbed straightforward one.


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During his Jeopardy! tenure, Trebek won six Daytime Emmys for outstanding Game show Host, while the organization likewise honored him with a lifetime accomplishment award in 2011. In 2012, he accepted a Peabody top top Jeopardy!’s behalf, and also in 2014, he damaged the Guinness civilization Record for “the many game present episodes hosted by the exact same presenter (same program)” with a lining 6,829 episodes. He has actually stars on the Hollywood to walk of Fame and also Canada’s to walk of Fame, and also in 2017 was called an Officer the the bespeak of Canada.


“Alex wasn’t simply the finest ever in ~ what the did,” Ken Jennings, that won 75 games in a row and became a de facto ambassador because that the show, composed on Twitter. “He was additionally a lovely and also deeply decent man, and I’m grateful for every minute I gained to spend with him.”

Trebek’s cultural reach to be vast. He showed up as himself in variety of television shows and movies, native Cheers and The X-Files to White guys Can’t Jump and also RuPaul’s traction Race. He also voiced a quiz-show organize on episodes of celebrated kid’s reflects Rugrats and also Arthur. And also of course, will certainly Ferrell played a famously beleaguered variation of Trebek top top Saturday Night Live’s “Celebrity Jeopardy!” skits, enduring years of linguistic abuse from dimwitted stars like Sean Connery and also Burt Reynolds.

Alex Trebek was born in Sudbury, Ontario, ~ above July 22nd, 1940, and began functioning in broadcast tv while quiet a college college student in the early on Sixties. Because that years, he was a jack-of-all-trades at the Canadian broadcasting Corp., spanning news and also sports, and even hosting the music program Music Hop. In 1966, he hosted his an initial game show, Reach because that the Top, and also landed his second, Strategy, in 1969.

Game mirrors remained Trebek’s forte together he found an ext work in Hollywood in the early Seventies. The an initial program he hosted on American tv was The sorcerer’s of Odds, with succeeding gigs top top High Rollers and The $128,000 Question. Later, Trebek even served as a game-show contestant: In 1976, he appeared on Celebrity Bowling, sporting a shirt that read “Alex Trebek, What the Heck!” and also in 1980, the beat a crowded ar of game-show master in a one-of-a-kind tournament edition of map Sharks.

Even after ~ Jeopardy! take it off, Trebek functioned at a amazing clip. For a brief duration in 1991, he became the an initial person to host three American video game shows at the exact same time (Jeopardy!, standard Concentration, and also To tell the Truth). He likewise hosted the Pillsbury Bake-Off for numerous years, served as a spokesman for early american Penn Life insurance and, one April Fools’ Day, also hosted Wheel of Fortune v co-hosts pat Sajak and Vanna White as contestants. Arguably, Trebek’s the very least successful endeavor was the time he moderated a 2018 Pennsylvania governor’s debate, during which that monopolized the conversation, argued with one of the candidates, and also even make an unprompted joke about sexual abuse in ~ the Catholic Church (he later apologized).

A continuous television existence for the far better part that the past 40 years, Trebek remained an endearing fixture that American famous culture. Clips of him reading rap text from clues or roastingunsuspecting contestants to be viral manna, and the notice of his cancer diagnosis was met v an outpouring of support from fans. Yet perhaps the many remarkable element of Trebek’s longevity is that, even after hosting plenty of episodes the Jeopardy! and its myriad offshoots, he never ever seemed to tire of the job.

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“I have to work, but it’s work I enjoy and that still has actually challenges,” that told new York newspaper in 2018. “I have actually at the very least two brand-new players on every program and all brand-new material the I’ve gained to check out properly. As I’ve acquired older i realize, as skilled athletes do, the the complicated thing is not losing your physics skills. It’s losing your ability to concentrate. . . . We have a clue every 10, 12 seconds. I can’t dwell top top the one ns screwed up; I have to dwell on the next one.”


After his diagnosis, Trebek vowed to store hosting Jeopardy! even as he began treatment (The show aired its 8,000th illustration in October.) as he underwent chemotherapy, Trebek was constantly honest around his status and also his state the mind. After proclaiming in may that his tumors had shrunk considerably and also he was “near remission,” that revealed in September that his numbers had skyrocketed back to levels higher than his original diagnosis.

In an October interview through Canadian news network CTV, Trebek was blunt about where he stood, but additionally lucid and also clear-eyed around the finish of his life.“I’ve lived a great life, a full life, and I’m nearing the end of the life,” he said. “I understand that. I’m not gonna delude myself. So if it happens, it happens. And why need to I be afraid of it?”