Jeopardy host, Alex Trebek, has died.

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Alex Trebek
Alex Trebek

Alex Trebek has died more than a year and a half after publicly revealing his stage 4 pancreatic cancer diagnosis. The Ontario-born Trebek was an American pop culture icon and a fixture in homes around the world as the beloved host of Jeopardy! for more than 35 years. He was 80.

The death was confirmed in a statement posted by the Twitter account for Jeopardy!, which noted that Trebek died early on Nov. 8 while surrounded by loved ones.

Alex Trebek has died more than a year and a half after publicly revealing his stage 4 pancreatic cancer diagnosis. The Ontario-born Trebek was an American pop culture icon and a fixture in homes around the world as the beloved host of Jeopardy! for more than 35 years. He was 80.

The death was confirmed in a statement posted by the Twitter account for Jeopardy!, which noted that Trebek died early on Nov. 8 while surrounded by loved ones.

In October, Trebek said he was “hanging in” there after announcing he was undergoing another round of chemotherapy. “We’ll play it by ear and keep chugging along until we either win or lose,” he told CTV News, adding he’s “not afraid of dying.”

“I’ve lived a good life, a full life, and I’m nearing the end of that life,” Trebek shared. “If it happens, why should I be afraid of that?” He kept a positive attitude throughout his cancer battle.

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Fans were ecstatic when Trebek, who hosted more than 7,000 Jeopardy! episodes, returned for Season 36 in September. He never missed an episode of the syndicated show since its 1984 premiere — even after undergoing surgery to remove blood clots from his brain in December 2017. In May, Trebek won his sixth Emmy for hosting Jeopardy!.

“I was concerned that sympathy might play a big role in the voting this year. I’m not a big fan of sympathy votes. We should be judged on the merits of our work. However [I remember] last year, I had just had major surgery to remove two life-threatening blood clots. You think that would elicit a certain amount of sympathy. But I didn’t win, so maybe I’ve been worrying about the wrong thing,” he quipped during his acceptance speech. “So I’ll do what Sally Field did [at the Oscars] … you guys like me, and you value my work. I tell you if that’s the case, I can live with that.”

Although Trebek studied philosophy at the University of Ottawa he decided to pursue a career in journalism landing his first job with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, CBC TV, in the ’60s. Trebek, who spoke both French and English, resonated with younger viewers thanks to his breezy demeanor covering everything from sports to music. It’s where he began hosting quiz and game shows.

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“I went to school in the mornings and worked at nights,” Trebek said. “I did everything, at one time replacing every announcer in every possible job.”

In 1973, Trebek left Canada for Hollywood where he landed his first American gig as the host of the NBC game show The Wizard of Odds, which only lasted one year. He followed it up with a slew of other jobs hosting short-lived shows High Rollers, The $128,000 Question, Battlestars and Pitfall. It wasn’t until 1984 that Trebek — and his trademark mustache — was tapped to launch the syndicated reboot of Jeopardy!, changing his career and life forever. (Jeopardy! had two previous runs from 1964-1975 and 1978-1979.) Trebek said there was an art to fitting in as Jeopardy! host.

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