“Remembering the passing of the great Alex Trebek a year ago today,” Mayim Bialik, who is the temporary part-time host of the show, tweeted on Monday, November 8. “Alex was a legendary entertainer, philanthropist, and lover of life. We miss you, Alex.”
“I miss Alex a lot,” the former champion, 47, who will host the show for three weeks, said in a clip via Jeopardy!’s Twitter. “When I’m in here, I feel like he’s in the building somewhere. It’s hard not to talk about him in the present tense.”
Jennings recalled the first time he guest hosted the beloved show, just weeks after Trebek died at the age of 80 from pancreatic cancer. He explained in the video tribute that the longtime host’s wife, Jean Currivan, left a special gift for him at the time.
“Alex’s wife Jean had given me a pair of his cufflinks that he had worn on the show. She thought about Jeopardy! and she thought about me, a person she had never even met,” he said, noting he wears the accessory anytime he’s on the set. “My Alex Trebrek cufflinks are the only cufflinks I own. They are kind of a good luck charm for me here.”
Currivan, for her part, shared an inspirational video via social media on Monday in celebration of her late husband’s life. The clip, which featured Alex discussing The Compassion Project before his passing, pushed for kindness, empathy and compassion in the classroom.
“My beloved husband passed away one year ago … one of his final messages was that of the importance of having compassion for each other,” she captioned the video. “In honor of Alex’s beautiful and powerful life.”
EVERFI, a digital learning company, explained in the message that they will be providing an additional 100 elementary schools with access to the Compassion Project in honor of the Hollywood icon.
Trebek’s death left a huge hole within the Jeopardy! family, especially when it came to who should take over his hosting gig. In August, the network announced that executive producer Mike Richards would be the full-time host with Bialik, 45, hosting primetime specials.
However, Richards, 46, later stepped away from the role after offensive comments about women and the Jewish community that he made in the past resurfaced. He apologized for his actions and then walked away from the show completely.