Iconic Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek today made the brave move of making a very public announcement that he has been diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. You can see the announcement for yourself in the video above as well the sense of comfort that Trebek himself imparts on Jeopardy! fans through his trademark warmth and wit.
As you can see, Trebek references his own policy of being open and transparent with Jeopardy! fans as the reason he's making this announcement in such a public way. While acknowledging the gravity of the situation, he also admits that he will need fan support, and prayers, for the fight ahead -- a fight he seems wholly committed to:
"Now normally, the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I'm going to fight this, and I'm going to keep working," Trebek says in the video announcement. He later adds, "...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. So help me. Keep the faith and we'll win. We'll get it done. Thank you."
He also made sure to make fans laugh, stating that he has to beat the low survival rate for his disease because, "I have to: because under the terms of my contract, I have to host 'Jeopardy!' for three more years!"
Three more years would complete a marathon run for Trebek and Jeopardy!; he's been the host of the show since its 1984 revival (amidst a lot of other hosting duties) and has cemented himself as a pop-culture icon of the highest order.1comments
Pancreatic cancer is notoriously deadly, as there are no real early screening tests, and no real cures for it. By the time it's discovered, it can already have progressed to an advanced degree. From the nature of the announcement and the way Trebek presents his diagnosis, it seems as though he was such a case.
We wish Mr. Trebek our support and well-wishes in the days and weeks ahead.