Alex Trebek has been diagnosed with Stage IV pancreatic cancer. The longtime Jeopardy host made the announcement by way of a video that he posted online on Wednesday. The announcement comes less than two years after Trebek was diagnosed with a condition called subdural hematoma that required brain surgery.
Despite the devastating cancer news, Trebek seems positive and upbeat. He will continue hosting Jeopardy as he battles the disease.
Trebek will have the undying love and support of his wife, Jean Currivan Trebek, whom he’s been married to for almost 30 years. The couple has two kids together, son Matthew and daughter Emily.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Trebek Acknowledged His Family in His Announcement
Trebek revealed his diagnosis in a 1-minute long video that was posted on the Jeopardy website on Wednesday afternoon. In the video, Trebek acknowledged his family, all of whom will be supporting him as he vows to beat the odds.
“Just like 50,000 other people in the United States each year, this week I was diagnosed with Stage IV pancreatic cancer. Now, normally the prognosis for this is not very encouraging. But I’m going to fight this. And I’m going to keep working. And 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 of this disease,” Trebek said. He then joked about having three more years on his Jeopardy contract.
You can watch the full announcement in the video above.
2. They Have Been Married 29 Years
Alex and Jean have been married for 29 years this coming April. The on-air personality met his wife, a New York real estate manager, at a party in the late 80s. When Currivan first saw Trebek, she admits that she was super nervous.
“I was afraid I’d mispronounce my own name! But Alex is really down to earth. He’s much more casual than he is on the show,” she told People Magazine shortly after tying the know.
The two dated for about a year before Trebek popped the question, proposing first with a pair of pants and a jacket before presenting her with an “incredible 16-carat sapphire ring, surrounded by six carats’ worth of diamonds,” according to People.
3. His Wife Is 26 Years Younger Than Him
Jean Currivan Trebek is 26 years younger than her husband. While the two were both a bit nervous about the age gap when they first met, they decided to roll with it.
“At first it worried me. But then I thought, ‘the hell with it. We’ll make it work,'” Trebek told People Magazine shortly after tying the know.
“I can understand why he was cautious about being with a younger woman. So I didn’t try to push him. We just took it one day at a time,” Currivan added.
4. Their Son Owns a Restaurant in New York
Shortly after they got married, Mr. and Mrs. Trebek found out that they were expecting. Nine months later, the Trebek’s became parents, welcoming their son Matthew. Less than three years later, they became a family of four when they welcomed their daughter, Emily.
Both of the Trebek kids are in their late 20s, but they live their lives completely out of the spotlight.
Back in 2016, Matthew opened a Mexican street-food restaurant called Oso.
“There was just something about the hospitality industry that I fell in love with. It’s great because it’s very free form in that it allows you to venture out into so many different fields: design, food, drinks, music, graphic design, and even just talking to people,” Matthew said in an interview with Fordham News.
5. Their Daughter Graduated from Loyola & Loves Architecture
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#HappyFathersDay! Today, Emily Trebek, Alex’s daughter, shares this memory about him: “When I was little, going to work with my dad was one of my favorite things to do. In our downtime on set, I loved to color and would often draw him several pictures and hang them all over his office as decoration. One morning, I drew him this ‘World’s Greatest Dad’ sign. He’s kept it on the front of his office door ever since, even 18 years later. I’m so proud to be his daughter. He is the most caring and supportive father and truly is the World’s Greatest Dad.” 👨👧
Less is known about Emily Trebek, who graduated from Loyola Marymount University in 2015. As an adult, Emily has been interested in design and architecture. In 2017, she opened up about the first home that she flipped.
“I have always been interested in homes. When I was little, I wanted to be an architect. After graduating, I decided to get into real estate. As I was getting ready to flip my first house, I told my dad that I wanted to do it with him. If dad can fix something, he will not have anyone else do it. I remember back when I was learning to drive, and I would accidentally run over a sprinkler head or path lighting in the driveway, we all knew dad would be out five seconds later fixing it. And I always watched him fix things, and wanted to learn,” she said in an interview for the Jeopardy blog.
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