Many of us were devastated to hear beloved game show host Alex Trebek announce his diagnosis with stage four pancreatic cancer. As someone who is no stranger to beating the odds when it comes to daunting diagnoses, Olivia Newton-John reached out to the Jeopardy! host with some inspiring words of encouragement. The actress is currently battling breast cancer for the third time since her initial diagnosis in 1992. She shared her message, which she sent directly to Trebek, while chatting with Entertainment Tonight (ET).
“I sent him a message saying, 'I know you can get through this. Don’t listen to ‘stage four’ and all of that, don’t read the statistics. Stay focused and see how you can heal yourself.'”
As a survivor of multiple cancer-related setbacks, including a tumor on her spine and the stage four cancer spreading to other parts of her body, Newton-John’s resilience and ability to repeatedly overcome all the obstacles is undeniably encouraging. The Grease actress was visiting ET to promote her memoir, Don’t Stop Believin' ($16.80, Amazon), which highlights how she’s able to remain so optimistic despite so many struggles with not just her health, but personal life and career as well.
That’s certainly something that can come as a comfort to Alex Trebek and others like him dealing with their own cancer battles. Trebek announced his diagnosis in a YouTube video where he remained as calm and charming as ever. “Normally the prognosis for this is not very encouraging,” he admitted, “but I’m going to fight this, and I’m going to keep working. And with the love and support from my family and friends, and with the help of your prayers also, I plan to beat the low survival rates statistics for this disease.” He even ended the message with a joke about his hosting duties, “Truth told, I have to — because under the terms of my contract, I have to host Jeopardy! For three more years.”
We’re cheering for both of these legendary entertainers to have speedy recoveries!