When I was a little boy I would watch the original daytime version of Jeopardy which was hosted by Art Fleming. Even then Jeopardy was making its mark on the culture. One news story that stuck with me was about a man who was in a coma and was not responding to anything. One day that Jeopardy theme was playing on a TV in his room and it is said the he credited that little jingle-the same one we hear today as the contestants write down their Final Jeopardy responses in the form of a question-with bringing him back to the waking world. Was the theme song responsible for this man’s recovery from his coma or was it just coincidentally playing when he would have woken up anyway? Who knows, and frankly, who cares. The romantic in me will always favor the former.
I recalled that story today as I reflected on the passing of Alex Trebek. When the clock strikes seven in our house on any weeknight we are home the TV is tuned to Channel Seven just in time to hear, “This is Jeopardy!” And every night we would hear, “And here is your host, Alex Trebek!” But Alex was much more than a game show host and in the last year or so as he bravely battled stage four cancer with tenacity, courage and faith. he made a public announcement to his fans after the diagnosis was made and throughout this battle he never failed to exude grace, wit and professionalism in the performance of his hosting duties. Even on days when none of that could have been at all easy.
Rest in Peace, Alex. You are already missed.