Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek has been battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer for nearly a year now

By Eric Todisco
January 02, 2020 01:48 PM

Alex Trebek‘s stage 4 pancreatic cancer diagnosis has not been easy for both he and his wife of nearly 30 years, Jean Currivan Trebek.

In a recent interview with Good Morning Americas Michael Strahan, the couple opened up about what the hardest part of the Jeopardy! host’s health issues has been for Jean, 54.

“For me, it’s when I see him in pain and I can’t help him,” she told Strahan. “When he doesn’t eat right. When he has too much diet soda.”

The former NFL star asked Jean if she’s ever voiced to her husband, 79, that he should take a break from the ABC game show series amid his health condition.

“Yes, to my girlfriends, yes,” she shared. “But I know its what feeds him. He loves doing Jeopardy!. He has his own family over there. They are such a close-knit, beautiful group of people. I think that gives him a lot of support. A sense of purpose and that he’s just not in bed and can be productive.”

Alex also shared his point of view of how his cancer diagnosis has been difficult for his wife.

“Its always tough for the caretakers because she has to deal with her worrying for my wellbeing and also dealing with… I’m not always the most pleasant person to be around when I am experiencing severe pain and depression, and she has to tread lightly around me,” he said.

Alex and Jean were married in 1990. They share two children together: son Matthew, 30, and daughter Emily, 27.

Kevin Winter/WireImage

The longtime TV host revealed the news of his pancreatic cancer diagnosis to fans in a video message in March. After undergoing months of treatment, Alex told fans in August that he had finished his treatment and was doing better.

But one month later, Trebek announced on Good Morning America that he was once again undergoing chemotherapy.

Despite his health, the game show’s longtime beloved host isn’t hanging up his hat anytime soon, despite still working to beat pancreatic cancer, which he was diagnosed with last March.

“He has no plans to quit, and is absolutely not announcing his retirement [anytime soon],” said a coworker of Trebek, who had told CTV News in an October interview that he wasn’t sure exactly how much longer he could continue hosting the show, owing to the side effects from chemotherapy.

“We’ll play it by ear and keep chugging along until we either win or lose,” Trebek said at the time.