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Alex Trebek: I Have Some Regrets About Cancer Fight

'Jeopardy!' host gives extensive interview to an outlet in his native Canada
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2019 2:02 PM CDT

(Newser) – Less than a month after delivering the sobering news that he had to go back on chemo to treat his pancreatic cancer, Alex Trebek has given a hint that his time as the host of Jeopardy! may be coming to a close. "I will keep doing it as long as my skills do not diminish, and they have started to diminish," he told CTV News in an extensive interview that aired Friday. He says he has sores in his mouth from the chemo, which cause him to slur his words at times, and though the producers of the show say they don't notice yet, "When I feel that my skills have diminished to the point that I notice and am bothered by it," it may be time to say goodbye, he said. "There will come a point when they (fans and producers) will no longer be able to say, 'It’s OK.'"

Trebek, who has hosted almost 8,000 episodes of the show over 36 seasons, said he sometimes regrets being so public about his cancer battle. "I have become in many ways the spokesperson for pancreatic cancer. … There are a lot expectations, and what I’ve is discovered is that not only have I become the de facto flag carrier for it, a lot of people are coming to me and looking for help, reassurance, and that’s tough," he said. He recounted a story of attempting to comfort a woman who had just been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and the difficulty of "trying to be as optimistic as you can when the other person feels none of that, they feel only despair." But he says he's not scared of dying: "I’ve lived a good life, a full life, and I’m nearing the end of that life. I know that." Though, he adds, "It does bother me that I might pass on before I get to have a grandchild. Hint hint!" (Read more Alex Trebek stories.)

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