(LOS ANGELES) — Alex Trebek, who went public with his fight with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer earlier this year, has a message for his Jeopardy! fans: He’s “on the mend.”
In promotional materials for the show’s 35th season, Trebek is seen backstage as well as on-set, answering audience questions. He states, “I’ve gone through a lot of chemotherapy. Thankfully, that is now over. I’m on the mend and that’s all I can hope for right now.”
The video was apparently taped on July 22, Trebek’s 79th birthday, because while he’s talking to the audience, a cake is brought out and the audience sings “Happy Birthday” to the game show host.
“We have some exciting things coming up [this season] and I can’t wait to share them with all of you,” he says, declaring, “Let me tell you, it’s going to be a good year.”
Close to 57,000 will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this year, and just under 46,000 will die from the disease, according to the American Cancer Society.
The five-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer is about 9%, the organization reported.
Back in May, Trebek told People magazine in May that some of his tumors had “shrunk by almost 50%” and that he was “near remission.”
Calling the response to his illness “mind-boggling,” he credited his fans for their “good thoughts, their positive energy directed towards me and their prayers.”
“I told the doctors, ‘This has to be more than just the chemo,’ and they agreed it could very well be an important part of this,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of love out there headed in my direction and a lot pf prayer, and I will never, ever minimize the value of that.”
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