Alex Trebek Wished He Met His Wife Earlier So They Could Have More Time Together

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Alex Trebek wife Jean talks marriage
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Alex Trebek stunned the world earlier this week when he announced that he has been diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. The longtime Jeopardy! host posted a video to his Youtube page to share the news directly with fans, so rumors would not circulate about his health.

“I also wanted to prevent you from reading or hearing some overblown or inaccurate reports regarding my health. So therefore, I wanted to be the one to pass along this information,” he said in the video before revealing his battle. “Now, just like 50,000 other people in the United States each year, this week I was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.”

[RELATED: “Jeopardy!” Host Alex Trebek Reveals He Has Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer— “I’m Going to Fight This”]

In an interview with People prior to the diagnosis,  the 78-year-old was wishing he had met his wife, Jean, earlier so they could spend more time together.

“My wife Jean and I have been together almost 29 years, and I was thinking about President Bush when he died, and all the comments about his life about what a nice guy he is, and how he and his wife had been together 73 years.  I thought, oh my gosh … if I’d just met Jean in my 20s we could have had a longer life together.”

But in true Alex fashion, he threw a joke about his marriage in the fray.

“I guess if I’d met her when I was in my 20s she wouldn’t have been born yet. But hey, 29 years is pretty good!,” he added.

Jean touched on the fact that her husband is a funny guy.

“He’s got a great sense of humor,” Jean told PEOPLE in January. “He takes his job very seriously, but won’t take himself too seriously.” He’s also youthful. “He’s just an intelligent human being. Part of Alex’s staying youthful is his staying curious.”

We wish Alex the best as he goes through this next battle in his life.