Alex Trebek was visibly touched after a Jeopardy! contestant sent him a message of support amid the longtime host’s battle with cancer.
Dhruv Gaur of Gainesville, Georgia, wagered $1,995 of his $2,000 earnings in the Final Jeopardy round on Monday, November 11, during day six of the Tournament of Champions. He apparently did not know the correct answer to the clue, so he used the opportunity to show some love for Trebek, 79, instead.
“Did you come up with the right one? No?” the Emmy winner asked the Brown University student before Gaur’s message appeared on the screen.
“What is: ‘We love you, Alex,’” Trebek read aloud as his voice cracked. “Oh, that’s very kind. Thank you.”
As he held back tears, the game show legend got right back to work, telling Gaur, “Cost you $1,995. You’re left with five bucks.”
Trebek’s reaction to the moment quickly went viral on Twitter, prompting the hashtag #WeLoveYouAlex to become a trending topic.
“Who’s chopping onions again?” one emotional viewer tweeted. Another wrote, “Amazing example of how much even a small act of kindness can mean to someone.”
Gaur himself also took to Twitter on Monday night to explain why he decided to “say to Alex what everybody at the tournament was thinking.”
“Alex had just shared with us that he was reentering treatment for pancreatic cancer,” the contestant tweeted. “We were all hurting for him so badly. When Final Jeopardy came up, I could’ve tried to puzzle it together, but really, just kept thinking about Alex, and thought he should know. I’m very grateful I got the opportunity to say what I know everyone was thinking. Sending all the love. #weloveyoualex.”
Trebek announced in March that he had been diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer. He underwent chemotherapy and seemed to be in good spirits when he returned to work in August. However, he said on Good Morning America in September that he had to “undergo chemo again.”
“I’m slurring my words. My tongue doesn’t work as much, as well as it used to. The chemo has caused sores inside my mouth. It makes it difficult for me to speak and enunciate properly,” he said on Canada’s W5 in October, adding that he will continue to host Jeopardy! “as long as my skills don’t diminish.”
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