ALEX Trebek isn’t one to let his emotions get the best of him. But that’s exactly what happened during the Nov. 11 episode of Jeopardy! Instead of a wager, Tournament of Champions contestant Dhruv Gaur scribbled “We love you, Alex!” as his Final Jeopardy answer. “That’s very kind of you,” the 79-year-old host, who’s battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer, replied to the Brown University student, clearly choked up. As he fought back tears, the usually stoic TV veteran quickly regained his composure and got back to business. The clip instantly went viral.
It’s just one of many touching moments the star has experienced as he gears up to say goodbye to his friends, his loving family and his millions of fans. “I’m nearing the end of my life,” he says in a new interview. “I know that, I’m not going to delude myself.” In his signature straightforward manner, Alex reveals he has no fear of death. “If it happens, it happens,” he says. “Why should I be afraid?” And the doting husband and father (he and his wife of 29 years, Jean, 55, have two children: Matthew, 28, and Emily, 26) insists he has no regrets. “I’ve lived a good life, a full life,” he reflects. “One thing they’re not going to say at my funeral, as a part of a eulogy, is ‘He was taken from us too soon.’”
The Canada native announced his dire diagnosis in March. “Normally the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I’m going to fight this,” he said at the time. By May, his cancer was in remission, thanks to a successful round of chemotherapy. At the end of the summer, however, he experienced a major setback. After having “numbers that correspond with a normal human being without cancer,” he reveals, “then all of a sudden, it went higher than when it was first diagnosed. Go figure.”
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