It's been an emotional year for Alex Trebek as he continues to host Jeopardy! in the midst of a battle with pancreatic cancer. Though he's put on a brave face for the public and continued to remain honest and optimistic, the longtime host had an emotional (albeit brief) break in his composure during a recent episode of the Tournament of Champions.
The moment came on rather unexpectedly during the episode's Final Jeopardy. Dhruv Gaur had no shot at beating out the day's champion Emma Boettcher, so instead risked $1995 of his $2000 to send a touching message to Alex Trebek. The message was simple, but it seemed to have a profound impact on the Jeopardy! host.
It wasn't elaborate, extravagant, or even entirely original. It was kind, however, and seemed to be something that Alex Trebek truly appreciated even if it happened while filming an episode. Not much can throw off Trebek, but he took a moment to compose himself, and his voice broke just a bit as he went on to Kyle Jones. I'll take "who the hell is chopping onions" for $400, please.
Alex Trebek was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer back in early March, and it's been a year of ups and downs for the Jeopardy! host. Initial treatment went well, and Trebek announced that he was able to quit chemotherapy. He then later announced that his celebration was a bit premature, and that he had to undergo chemotherapy again in order to improve his condition.
The emotional reaction of Alex Trebek comes a month after a surprisingly candid interview from the host, who said he may soon need to step down from Jeopardy! He also expressed some regret about going public with his cancer diagnosis, and that in doing so he's become a face of sorts for the disease. Trebek admitted the optimism he's shown has been hard to maintain, and he does fear he can alleviate the despair that comes with the illness for others who may be suffering.
Battling cancer is one thing, but it's likely a whole different beast fighting it as a public figure seen almost daily in many American homes. It wouldn't be surprising if Alex Trebek does wish to step down, though we've heard no official word that's the case. While there have been rumors that there are folks being sought out to take over hosting duties for the show, that remains speculation at this time.