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R.I.P. 5-time Jeopardy! champion Brayden Smith

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Screenshot: Jeopardy

Brayden Smith has died. One of the final contestants to appear on Jeopardy! during Alex Trebek’s tenure as host of the series, Smith was a 5-time champion on the long-running game show, winning $115,798 across all his episodes from late 2020 to early 2021. The official Jeopardy! Twitter account announced his death today; no cause of death was given. Smith was 24.


According to his obituary, Smith was a 2020 graduate of the University Of Nevada, which he attended, at least in part, on a scholarship he received for his performance on his high school Quiz Bowl team. A former intern at the Cato Institute with an eye on attending law school and becoming a government lawyer, Smith is described as an auto-didact and a lover of music, history, and film.

Smith’s run on Jeopardy!—described as a lifelong dream—began airing in December of 2020 and stretched into January of this year. His six-game streak was the final such run in the final weeks of Trebek’s time with the series.


A memorial fund has been created in Smith’s name; donation details can be found here.