Contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Dies a Week Before Episode Airs

December 8, 2016 Updated: December 8, 2016

A “Jeopardy!” contestant died just a week before her episode was slated to air, her boyfriend announced.

Cindy Stowell, 41, who was battling Stage IV cancer, died this week, her boyfriend, Jason Hess, announced via Twitter. She was a science-content developer from Austin, Texas.

“In the early morning hours cancer took the best friend, partner and pub trivia teammate a guy could ask for. Love you always,” he wrote.

“Be nice. She was fighting a high-grade fever (which turned out to be a blood infection) and was on painkillers while taping” the “Jeopardy!” episode, he tweeted. According to People magazine, the episode was taped in August.

Stowell’s episode is set to air on Dec. 13, and it will be the first time “Jeopardy!” aired a contestant who died before the episode premiered. 

“When Cindy Stowell taped her appearance on Jeopardy!, she had Stage IV cancer. Competing on Jeopardy! was a lifelong dream for Cindy, and we’re glad she was able to do so,” host Alex Trebek told the New York Post. “Sadly, Cindy died on Dec. 5. All of us at Jeopardy! offer our condolences and best wishes to her family and friends.”

On Aug. 31, she taped her appearance three weeks after she qualified for appearing on the program.

“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,” her mother Carole Stowell, brother Greg Stowell, and Hess wrote in a joint statement to the Post.