Uproar After Newspaper Publishes Pictures Of Alex Trebek Amid Cancer Fight
By Dave Basner
June 1, 2020
Jeopardy host Alex Trebek has been very open about his fight with stage four pancreatic cancer. In March of 2019, he released a video message to fans revealing that he was battling the illness. A year later, he put out another video, this time announcing that he'd beaten the odds by surviving for a full year since his diagnosis. He went on to note that although only seven percent of those with stage four pancreatic cancer make it two years, he was optimistic, stating, "If we take it just one day at a time with a positive attitude, anything is possible."
Jeopardy has since gone on hiatus because of the coronavirus pandemic. They were one of the first game shows to halt production, mostly to protect the immunocompromised Trebek from contracting COVID-19. Alex has been spending his time since then safely and privately fighting cancer. However, a paparazzo recently took a photo of Trebek, bald from his chemotherapy treatment, as he took out his trash. British tabloid the Daily Mail then published the picture with the sensational headline, "EXCLUSIVE: Frail Alex Trebek, 79, is almost unrecognizable as the Jeopardy! host is seen taking out the trash in LA amid his battle with pancreatic cancer." It was not received well.
SurvivorNet.com, a site dedicated to helping and educating anyone battling cancer, asked their community what they thought of the article. Many of the responses slammed the tabloid and demanded that Trebek be left alone. One commenter wrote:
"I am totally disgusted at the photographer and whoever wrote and published this article. Where is your compassion? Alex is a decent man that does not need this. I understand what his wife and family are living with and fighting. I am heartbroken for them. To the person that took this photo, please grow a heart."
Another pointed out that the newspaper wasn't just wrong to print the pic, they were also just plain wrong, saying, "He looks amazingly healthy for someone who’s had pancreatic cancer. My husband had pancreatic cancer and he only lasted for 4 months and he was much younger than Alex. He hardly had the strength to get out of bed, never mind take out the trash." Others agreed, writing, "I think he looks strong! My best friend was diagnosed with PC, stage 4 on Christmas and was dead by Feb 17th. He was only 43 and only made it six weeks. Alec looks like a miracle to me."
Next month, Alex will release a memoir called The Answer Is...: Reflections on My Life, which, according to its publisher, describes Trebek's 36 years hosting Jeopardy, and gives anecdotes and insight on marriage, parenthood, education, success, spirituality and philanthropy." It comes out on July 21, the day after Alex's 80th birthday.
Photo: Getty Images