Passing away late last year, the legendary Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek’s absence leaves a considerable void in his wake. His wife feels the same and recently talked about how they were “equal partners” in their marriage.
The Eden Magazine’s October 2021 issue featured Jean Trebek and had her discussing her late husband. One of the big subjects she covered was his celebrity status. To say Alex was an icon is putting it lightly, he was Jeopardy! and Jeopardy! was him. However, Jean never thought of him like that and said she’s thankful for it.
“In looking back, the fact that I did not identify Alex as an ‘icon’ was a gift,” Jean said. “We were equal partners in a marriage, and we had our own personal growth issues to deal with just like any ordinary couple.”
She goes on to say it actually would have been detrimental to their marriage had she viewed him in that light. “It would have been really weird for both Alex and myself if I thought of him as some celebrity. He could just be himself at home, and that was it.”
Meeting in 1988, Alex had hosted Jeopardy! for only four years at the time. Coincidentally, Jean worked as a part-time bookkeeper for one of Trebek’s friends. Dating for two years, the couple married one another in 1990 and eventually had two children, Matthew and Emily. Trebek also had another daughter from a previous marriage, Nicky.
Jean Trebek Talks About Family and Fan Support Amid Alex’s Passing
In the same interview, Jean spoke about other aspects of her marriage with Alex. One of the most meaningful to her was the support her family and fans provided.
Stating in the interview Alex was her “most beloved friend,” the impact he had on the world really hit her when he announced he had stage 4 pancreatic cancer. “For the most part, Alex and I enjoyed staying at home. When we did go out, it was perhaps for a quick dinner or movie every now and then, so it wasn’t like we were always out in public for me to really notice his popularity,” she said. “I started realizing just how much he was adored by people from all walks of life when he made his public announcement that he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.”
Jean also noted the couple “received cartons of mail every day filled with get-well cards, etc… at our home address.” On that note, what especially helps her cope are the people closest to her. Some days are worse than others when it comes to missing Alex. When the bad days hit, “I find that being with my family and friends or doing something creative and new is really helpful.”