Brayden Smith, a five-time “Jeopardy!” winner hailed as “Alex’s last champion” for his flurry of victories during late host Alex Trebek’s final episodes of the show, has died at the age of 24.
Smith died on Feb. 5 in Las Vegas, his family announced in an obituary published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal on Friday. The cause of death was not stated.
Smith’s mother, Deborah Smith, paid tribute to her son on Twitter.
“We are so grateful that Brayden was able to live out his dream” on the show,” she wrote:
We are heartbroken to share that our dear Brayden Smith recently passed away unexpectedly. We are so grateful that Brayden was able to live out his dream on @jeopardy. pic.twitter.com/e5x18xGcxV
— Debbie Smith (@debbieinlv) February 12, 2021
“Jeopardy!” also honored its former contestant:
The JEOPARDY! family is heartbroken by the tragic loss of Brayden Smith. He was kind, funny and absolutely brilliant. Our deepest condolences go out to Brayden’s family. He will be missed. https://t.co/aFQRt6KzPc
— Jeopardy! (@Jeopardy) February 12, 2021
The show described Smith as “kind, funny and absolutely brilliant.”
“Our deepest condolences go out to Brayden’s family,” the show added. “He will be missed.”
James Holzhauer, who dominated the game show in 2019, said he was “absolutely devastated by the tragic loss,” describing Smith as one the show’s “finest players and Las Vegas’s finest humans.”
Absolutely devastated by the tragic loss of one of Jeopardy’s finest players and Las Vegas’s finest humans.
Please consider a donation to Brayden’s memorial fund for Southern Nevada students. I will match the first $10,000.https://t.co/qjUKJXi8RYhttps://t.co/dE0reoR9CQ
— James Holzhauer (@James_Holzhauer) February 13, 2021
Smith had been looking forward to competing in the show’s Tournament of Champions, said his obituary.
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.
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