Late Alex Trebek Encourages 'Kindness' in Inspiring Thanksgiving Video Filmed Before His Death

Gabrielle Chung
·3-min read

jeopardy/ twitter Alex Trebek

Alex Trebek shared a very important and timely message before his death.

The late Jeopardy! host, who died on Nov. 8 at the age of 80, spoke about the importance of kindness in a video previously recorded in celebration of Thanksgiving Day.

Released on Thursday by the trivia competition series, the 23-second clip featured Trebek delivering an inspiring message highlighting those who are "extending helpful hands" during a time of need.

"You know, in spite of what America and the rest of the world is experiencing right now, there are many reasons to be thankful," he said. "There are more and more people extending helpful hands to do a kindness to their neighbors, and that's a good thing."

"Keep the faith," he continued. "We're gonna get through all of this and we will be a better society because of it."

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Production for Jeopardy! resumed over the summer after a hiatus earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The game show returned for its 37th season in September, with Trebek as host.

New episodes featuring Trebek will continue to air through Christmas Day, according to Sony Pictures Television. The game show recently announced that Jeopardy! champ Ken Jennings will take on the role as a guest host, with others slated to follow at a later time.

Jeopardy! executive producer Mike Richards said in a statement earlier this month that the longtime host's death is "an enormous loss for the Jeopardy! staff, crew and all of Alex’s millions of fans."

Eric McCandless via Getty Images Alex Trebek

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"He was a legend of the industry that we were all lucky to watch night after night for 37 years," said Richards. "Working beside him for the past year and a half as he heroically continued to host Jeopardy! was an incredible honor. His belief in the importance of the show and his willingness to push himself to perform at the highest level was the most inspiring demonstration of courage I have ever seen."

"His constant desire to learn, his kindness and his professionalism will be with all of us forever," he added.

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Trebek's death came over a year after he was first diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer in March 2019. At the time, he told viewers, "I'm going to fight this and I'm going to keep working."

The TV icon told viewers in August 2019 that he had finished treatment and was doing better, but a month later, he said he was once again undergoing chemotherapy.

In a interview with PEOPLE this July, Trebek opened up about how his wife Jean had been his rock since his cancer diagnosis.

"She's kept me alive," he said of his wife of 30 years. "If it weren’t for Jean, I’d have put myself out of this a long time ago."