CULVER CITY, CA — A Westfield native was among the “Jeopardy!” contestants to interact with the show’s host, Alex Trebek, in the final months before his death Nov. 8 at 80.
Daniella Regencia, 32, now an attorney living in Santa Barbara, California, appeared on the show Wednesday night in an episode recorded about two months earlier.
“He seemed just as sharp and witty as ever when I filmed my episode,” Regencia said. “It didn’t seem that he was two months away from passing away.”
On Wednesday, she watched the episode at a bar in Santa Barbara with friends, who she had participated in a regular Wednesday night trivia game with before the pandemic.
But even before the episode aired, family and friends from the east coast were calling and sending her messages about her appearance on the show, which aired first in that time zone, she told TAPinto Westfield.
Her appearance on “Jeopardy!” generated even more excitement among family members than her recent engagement, Regencia said.
“I had just gotten engaged three weeks ago and nobody was calling my grandma about that, but 'Jeopardy!,'” she said, prompted outreach from “the whole family.”
The Westfield High School graduate said she was most proud of her correctly answering a question about the home of a famed American author.
The question: “His daughter sold this author’s home back to the University of Mississippi back in the 1970s,” said Regencia, recalling the question.
The answer: “Who is William Faulkner?”
In her preparation for the competition, Regencia said, she had answered several questions about the famed author incorrectly, but when Trebek asked her the question on set, she scored.
And while her answer to the final question on “Jeopardy!” was incorrect — a question in the category of “History of Medicine” — it prompted an amusing interaction with Trebek after the show.
The question: “2020 marks the 55th birthday of the first piece of equipment dedicated to this process, now used for regular screenings?”
While the correct answer was “mammogram,” Regencia’s answer was “colonoscopy.”
“My final jeopardy answer was pretty funny to him,” she said, and then added: “He just walked right over and was like 'colonoscopy why would you pick that?'”
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Email Matt Kadosh at firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter: @MattKadosh
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