The long-running tenure of Alex Trebek's time as the hose of Jeopardy! might be coming to an end as he continues his battle with pancreatic cancer. Trebek recently opened up about his experiences combatting the disease during a revealing interview with CTV, explaining that he had to go back for more chemotherapy at the end of the summer. He still insists that he plans to do the show as long as he's able to, adding that he feels pressure to continue on the show as he undergoes another round of chemotherapy.
“There are weaknesses I feel in my body but I can always suck it up when it comes to tape the show,” he said.
He added that he will continue hosting Jeopardy! "as long as my skills do not diminish," but that the chemo has caused open sores to develop in his mouth that makes enunciating certain words more difficult.
“I’m sure there are observant members of the television audience that notice also, but they’re forgiving,” Trebek explained. “But there will come a point when they (fans and producers) will no longer be able to say, ‘It’s okay.’”
Trebek admitted that he experienced some regret for going public with his illness because "there’s a little too much Alex Trebek out there."
"A lot of people are coming to me and looking for help, reassurance -- and that’s tough," he explained, adding that it was hard "trying to be as optimistic as you can when the other person feels none of that … they feel only despair. And I don’t know if I was strong enough or intelligent enough to help alleviate that despair."
Regarding his chemotherapy, Trebek said they might have to take a different approach regarding his treatments in the future.
“I'm hanging in,” Trebek said. “So we're back on the chemo and we'll see if the numbers go down. And if they do... they can't keep doing it forever of course. They’ll have to find a new protocol or whatever to administer. We'll play it by ear and keep chugging along until we either win or lose.”
Despite the illness, Trebek explained that he is not afraid of the possibility of losing the battle.
"I’m not afraid of dying,” said Trebek. “I’ve lived a good life, a full life, and I’m nearing the end of that life … if it happens, why should I be afraid that."