Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek thanked his legion of fans for their show of support after he announced last week he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.
"Hi everyone, I just want to take a few moments to say thanks to the — believe it or not — hundreds of thousands of people who have sent in tweets, texts, emails, cards and letters wishing me well following my recent health announcement," the beloved game show host said in a video released by Jeopardy! producers. "I've heard from former contestants. Even Watson, the IBM computer, sent me a get well card."
Trebek, 78, continued, "Now, obviously I won't be able to respond to all of you individually but I did want you to know that I do read everything I receive. And I am thankful for the kind words, the prayers and the advice you have offered and I am extremely touched by the warmth you have expressed in your comments to me. I'm a lucky guy."
The Jeopardy! crew released a video of Trebek announcing his cancer diagnosis on March 6 in an effort to get around speculative articles about his health. On Wednesday, a spokeswoman for the show confirmed Trebek was back to work on the Sony Pictures lot in Culver City, California for the first time since announcing he was undergoing treatment.
"Just like 50,000 other people in the United States each year, this week I was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer," Trebek said on March 6. "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 for this disease."
"Truth told, I have to! Because under the terms of my contract, I have to host Jeopardy! for three more years!" he said. "So help me. Keep the faith and we'll win. We'll get it done. Thank you."
Trebek has been hosting Jeopardy! since 1984. In November, he signed a contract extension, which is set to keep him hosting the show through 2022.
Last month, Trebek shared a list of possible replacements once he finally retires, suggesting CNN's Laura Coates, Los Angeles Kings announcer Alex Faust and TCM host Ben Mankiewicz.0comments
"It's probably going to be a woman, somebody younger, somebody bright, somebody personable, somebody with a great sense of humor," Trebek told reporters. "So I nominated Betty White."
Photo credit: Santiago Felipe/Getty Images