"Jeopardy!" contestant Cindy Stowell's final episode aired Wednesday, marking the end of a six-game winning streak that culminated in winnings of more than $100,000. But she died from colon cancer at age 41 on Dec. 5, eight days before her first episode aired.
A message posted Wednesday on the game show's website read, "Six-time champion Cindy Stowell competed on Jeopardy! with a singular goal in mind: to donate her prize money to cancer-related organizations. When she taped her episodes in August and September of this year, she had Stage 4 cancer ... When Cindy was in the hospital, Jeopardy! sent her advance copies of her first three episodes, so she and her family were able to watch her realize a lifelong dream of competing on the show. Jeopardy! also expedited Cindy’s prize money, and she received and acknowledged it before she passed."
"Jeopardy!" tweeted a video Wednesday, writing, "'Jeopardy!' contestant Cindy Stowell passed away prior to her shows’ airings. Here is her 'Jeopardy!' story, in her own words." Its includes clips of Stowell auditioning and revealing her cancer diagnosis.
"I wanted to donate the money to cancer research, partly because ... I'm dying of cancer, and I really would like the money I win to be used to help others, and this seems like a good opportunity," she says in the video, adding she'd been a fan of "Jeopardy!" since she was nine years old.
Jeopardy! contestant Cindy Stowell passed away prior to her shows’ airings. Here is her Jeopardy! story, in her own words. pic.twitter.com/MYFzJfxpAJ— Jeopardy! (@Jeopardy) December 22, 2016
Stowell, a science content-developer from Austin, Texas, "came on the show with a mission," "Jeopardy!" executive producer Harry Friedman said in a quote posted on the website. "We gave her the opportunity to fulfill that mission and she made the most of it."
The game show's host, Alex Trebek, said in a statement, "Competing on 'Jeopardy!' was a lifelong dream for Cindy, and we’re glad she was able to do so."
Stowell auditioned for the show in August, but before the audition, she reached out to a producer to ask how long it would be before she taped since she didn't have long to live. She was subsequently booked for the earliest possible taping of Aug. 31.