'Jeopardy' teen champ donates part of winnings to cancer research in honor of Alex Trebek

NEW YORK -- A teen who won this year's Teen Tournament on "Jeopardy!" is donating part of his winnings to cancer research in honor of his hero, longtime host Alex Trebek.

Avi Gupta, a freshman at Columbia University, took home $100,000 after winning the tournament in June.

In honor of Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, the 18-year-old announced he has donated more than $10,000 toward cancer research after learning about Trebek's health battle.


"When I heard his diagnosis, I was devastated, and I knew that whatever I could do to help, I was going to try and do that -- not just for him, but for the millions of others who suffer from cancer," Gupta said. "Because we all know someone who has cancer or has suffered from this deadly disease, and I just hope to support efforts to cure that."

Trebek is battling stage four pancreatic cancer and announced his diagnosis in March. He recently revealed he was having another round of chemotherapy.

He is urging everyone to learn about the risk and symptoms, and to wear purple in November to spread awareness. Last month he released a public service announcement in conjunction with the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition.


While Trebek has suggested his tenure as the longtime host of "Jeopardy!" may be coming to an end, Gupta remains optimistic.

"I know that his diagnosis is grim, the prognosis for his cancer is grim, and so I don't know what that means for his hosting going forward, but I know that if anyone can beat this disease and this diagnosis, it's Alex," Gupta said.

The exact amount of Gupta's donation was $10,314. The last three numbers are a nod to Pi.

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