“Jeopardy!” is struggling one other tragic loss after the dying of beloved host Alex Trebek.
Brayden Smith, a champion competitor throughout Trebek’s last episodes he filmed earlier than shedding his battle with pancreatic most cancers, died at age 24.
He died unexpectedly final Friday in his hometown of Las Vegas, Nevada.
“The ‘Jeopardy!’ household is heartbroken by the tragic lack of Brayden Smith,” the show said in a statement. “He was type, humorous and completely good. Our deepest condolences exit to Brayden’s household. He shall be missed.”
“We’re heartbroken to share that our expensive Brayden Smith not too long ago handed away unexpectedly,” Smith’s mom Debbie wrote on Twitter. “We’re so grateful that Brayden was capable of dwell out his dream on @jeopardy.”
The reason for dying is unknown, TMZ reported.
Smith received 5 video games in a row and greater than $115,000 throughout his week on the present, which was filmed in October.
According to his obituary, Smith “attained a lifelong dream” when he competed on “Jeopardy!” and was hailed on social media as “Alex’s Final Nice Champion.” Trebek had nicknamed him “Billy Buzzsaw” throughout his run and mentioned: “Most spectacular, I don’t know what to say,” throughout his gameplay.
“He was wanting ahead to competing within the present’s Match of Champions,” for which he had been certified, in response to his obit from the Dignity Memorial funeral residence.
“[Trebek] did, I imagine, actually like Brayden,” government producer Mike Richards told EW. “I might inform that he very a lot loved that younger man, and that was enjoyable to look at. I feel that energized him.”
“The very best a part of it for me was spending time with [Trebek],” Smith said in an interview after his successful streak. “Doing the questions and solutions is nearly incidental, I feel, to spending time with any individual who I had cherished in my life for such a protracted time frame… I feel again on it on a regular basis and actually savor every second that I bought to have with him.”
“Each second since I final was on the studio lot has been a second that I’ve been eager to get again on there,” he mentioned.
Smith graduated from the College of Nevada, Las Vegas with a level in economics in 2020 and hoped to attend legislation faculty to turn out to be an lawyer for the federal authorities. Lately he had served as an intern for the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C., serving to to analysis prison justice reform circumstances.
Earlier than faculty, Smith attended Liberty Excessive Faculty in Henderson, Nevada the place he was a Nationwide Benefit Scholar semifinalist. His love for “Jeopardy!” was fostered as a younger grownup when he captained his faculty’s Quiz Bowl group to back-to-back state runner-up finishes.
The “Jeopardy!” champ was not solely booksmart, however was in love with tradition, too. His household famous that he was an avid sports activities fan, beloved all genres of music and was obsessed with movie, flipping between Oscar winners and slapstick comedies with ease.
Smith is survived by his mother and father Scott and Deborah (Rudy) Smith, and three brothers: Bryce, 26, of Reno, Nevada, Brock, 18, and Brody, 15, each of Las Vegas.
Donations in Smith’s reminiscence could also be made to the Brayden Smith Memorial Fund.
Trebek, who hosted the present since 1984, died Nov. 8 at age 80.