“Jeopardy!” producer and former champion Ken Jennings returned Monday to host the gameshow on the one-year anniversary of long-time host Alek Trebek’s death.
Jennings told USA Today that he was unaware that his first show to air since producers announced in September that he and actress Mayim Bialik would split “Jeopardy!” hosting duties through the end of the year would go live on the anniversary of the beloved gameshow host’s death.
“They didn’t want to put that in my head,” he told the newspaper. “So, I was not told until after that it was the Nov. 8 show.”
Trebek died Nov. 8, 2020, after being diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.
In a video shared on “Jeopardy!” social media accounts Monday, Jennings said that even a year after Trebek’s death, “I feel like he’s probably in the building somewhere. It’s hard not to talk about him in the present tense.”
He shared that after the long-time host’s death, Trebek’s wife, Jean, gave him a pair of cuff links that Trebek had worn on the show. He told USA Today that he wore the cuffs while filming the show that aired Monday.
“My Alex Trebek cuff links are the only cuff links I own,” he said Monday. “They’re kind of a good luck charm for me here.”
Jennings, who holds the show’s highest winning streak at 74 games, is set to host “Jeopardy!” for the next three weeks, USA Today reported.
Others also took to social media Monday to remember Trebek, including his widow, Jean Trebek. In remembrance of her late husband, she took to Instagram to post a video of Alex Trebek filmed shortly before his death for The Compassion Project. In the video, he urged people to be compassionate with one another.
Alex Trebek’s daughter, Nicky, also remembered her father in a post shared on social media.
‘I see you in the subtle,” she wrote in an Instagram post, “I miss you in the moments #dad.”
In a Twitter post, Bialik remembered Trebek with a vintage photo, calling him “a legendary entertainer, philanthropist and lover of life.”
“We miss you, Alex,” she wrote.
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