Alex Trebek, the revered and beloved “Jeopardy!” host since 1984, whose calm but witty presence was must-see television for millions of Americans — has died … TMZ has learned.
A “Jeopardy!” spokesperson tells TMZ, “Jeopardy is saddened to share that Alex Trebek passed away peacefully at home early this morning, surrounded by family and friends.”
The TV icon had been battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer since announcing the news back in March 2019. He immediately started chemo after the diagnosis but made no plans to retire and continued hosting his game show … as impressively as ever.
Trebek powered through for a full year — despite what he called “massive attacks of great depression that made me wonder if it was really worth fighting on” — because he said he realized giving up on life would be a betrayal to his wife, God and other cancer patients.
He pointed out the odds of surviving a second year with pancreatic cancer were just 7 percent, but he hoped he’d be able to celebrate that milestone too. Sadly, he took a turn for the worse.
Alex continued to host “Jeopardy!” … recently beginning his 37th season, and earlier this year, he shot the epic ‘Greatest of All Time’ tournament on prime-time television.
Alex — who was named an officer of the Order of Canada in 2017 for his iconic achievements — married Elaine Kares in 1974 and they divorced in 1981. He married again in 1990 … this time to Jean Currivan, with whom he had 2 children … Matthew and Emily.