A recent Jeopardy! contestant found himself crying as he shared a magical revelation and inspiring story with host Alex Trebek. During Thursday's episode of the long-running game show, contestant Burt Thakur emerged the day's victor, walking away with more than $20,000 when all was said and done. As the show was concluding, Thakur shared something with Trebek that got the tears flowing.
"I learned English because of you. And so my grandfather, who raised me, I'm gonna get tears right now… I used to sit on his lap and watch you every day," Thakur revealed. "So, it’s a pretty special moment for me, man." Later, in a post-show recap, Thakur offered a little more details about growing up a Jeopardy! fan. "As you heard a little bit, I'm an immigrant and I learned English by watching Jeopardy!, and my oldest memories are with my grandfather watching the show," he said. "So, to have it come full circle the way it did, especially during this time of pandemic and everything, to have this opportunity and this gift is, I mean, it’s so emotional and incredible."
Alex's impact is immeasurable. Thank you for sharing, Burt! pic.twitter.com/XgGGwJ8GlH— Jeopardy! (@Jeopardy) November 6, 2020
Trebek has been hosting Jeopardy! since 1984 and has received 31 nominations for the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Game Show Host during his tenure. He was the award seven times. Recently, the beloved host celebrated his 80th birthday.
Jeopardy! issued a statement to fans who had been sending well-wishes to Trebek, writing, "Alex thanks all of you from the bottom of his heart for all of the messages of support he's received. Due to the sheer volume, he will no longer be responding to letters or requests for autographs. Please know that he appreciates each and every sentiment conveyed!"
In 2019, Trebek revealed that he is battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer, but that he has no plans to step down as host of Jeopardy! any time soon. "Now normally, the prognosis for this is not very encouraging, but I'm going to fight this, and I'm going to keep working," he said. "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! So help me. Keep the faith and we'll win. We'll get it done," Trebek's statement concluded. "Thank you."