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Alex Trebek honors 'Jeopardy!' winner who died from cancer before winning streak aired

"Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek paid tribute to Cindy Stowell, a contestant who died from colon cancer after winning for six straight episodes.
/ Source: TODAY

On the night Cindy Stowell's six-game winning streak on "Jeopardy!" came to an end, Alex Trebek paid tribute to the contestant who died from cancer a week before her first episode aired.

Stowell, 41, a science content developer from Austin, Texas, died from colon cancer on Dec. 5, eight days before the her first episode aired.

“For the past six 'Jeopardy!' programs, you folks have been getting to know the talented champion, Cindy Stowell. Appearing on the show was the fulfillment of a lifelong ambition for that lady,” Trebek said on Wednesday night's show.

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"What you did not know is that when we taped these programs with her a few weeks ago, she was suffering from Stage IV cancer and sadly, on Dec. 5, Cindy Stowell passed away. So from all of us here at "Jeopardy!", our sincere condolences to her family and her friends."

Stowell racked up $105,803 during her winning streak. She had previously indicated she wanted all of her winnings donated to the Cancer Research Institute, according to her boyfriend, Jason Hess.

Hess tweeted congratulations on Wednesday to contestant Sam Scovill, who defeated Stowell to end her streak. Scovill also thanked "Jeopardy!" for honoring Stowell.

During her taping of the show, Stowell also was battling a fever that turned out to be a blood infection, according to Hess.

She had passed the online contestant test in early 2016 and then went for an in-person audition in Oklahoma City. Only Trebek and a select group of staff members knew Stowell had cancer during the taping.

"Cindy came on "Jeopardy!" to play the game she loved and in doing so, she was able to make a contribution to cancer research in the hopes that no one else would have to go through what she did,'' Hess said in a joint statement along with Stowell's parents, Greg and Carole Stowell.

Follow writer Scott Stump on Twitter.