Dhruv Gaur, the Brown University student competing in the “Jeopardy!” Tournament of Champions, was eliminated in the semifinals in the episode that aired Monday. But he showed the heart of a champion by the way he lost.
For Final Jeopardy, Gaur wrote what he knew wasn’t the correct response. He wagered $1,995, lost it all, and ended up winning an emotional response from Alex Trebek, who got a little choked up and had to take a moment to regain his composure.
The Final Jeopardy clue was: “In the title of a groundbreaking 1890 expose of poverty in New York City slums, these 3 words follow ‘How the’
The correct response, which the other two nailed, was: “other half lives.”
But Gaur had written: “What is, ‘We [heart] you, Alex!’”
After reading Gaur’s card, Trebek took a moment to collect himself, then said to Gaur, “That’s very kind, thank you.”
Alex Trebek getting choked up during Final Jeopardy today messed me all the way up.#Jeopardy#WeLoveYouAlexpic.twitter.com/QJVP4hJpGV— sabreena (@aneerbas)November 12, 2019
What the audience didn’t yet know was that Trebek, who has been battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer, a disease with a low survival rate, had just told the contestants he was reentering treatment.
Gaur, who is from Gainesville, Georgia, saw all but $5 drain from his total. For placing third, however, he won $10,000, in addition to the $100,000 he won in the show’s 2018 College Championship.
Later, he tweeted: “When Final Jeopardy came up, I could’ve tried to puzzle it together, but really, just kept thinking about Alex, and thought he should know. I’m just very grateful I got the opportunity to say what I know everyone was thinking.” He concluded his four-tweet post by writing, “Sending all the love.”