Betty White and Alex Trebek Were Great Friends: Will She Make a Public Statement About His Death?

Betty White has admittedly been in show business for decades and throughout the years has been able to call many, many fellow actors and performers her friends.

One of her closest was late Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek, who died Nov. 8. Countless tributes have emerged for Trebek from celebrities, friends, and fans alike.

White, however, has remained silent about her friend’s death from pancreatic cancer.

Betty White and Alex Trebek, 1986
Betty White and Alex Trebek, 1986 | Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Betty White and Alex Trebek were very good friends

White and Trebek moved in the same circles and became good friends. Her husband, Allen Ludden, who died of stomach cancer in 1981, was also a famed game show host.

The beloved quiz show star even offered White’s name up as his replacement on Jeopardy!

“When people ask me who I’d like to see replace me, I say, ‘Well, it’s probably going to be a woman, and she’ll have to be bright, she’ll have to have a good sense of humor…’ Uhhh, let’s see… Betty White! Betty White is my choice,” Trebek said at a Television Critics Association tour in January.

And speaking with Good Morning America in July on the same topic, Trebek said, “I say Betty White. They want somebody younger, somebody funnier, she checks all those boxes. Betty and I have been friends for a long, long time.”

Alex Trebek, left, on an episode of 'The Golden Girls' with Betty White, David Leisure, and Bea Arthur
Alex Trebek, left, on an episode of ‘The Golden Girls’ with
Betty White, David Leisure, and Bea Arthur | Gary Null/NBCU Photo Bank

White fondly remembered Mary Tyler Moore after her death

What makes the absence of a social media post or statement from White about Trebek all the more curious is that she did post a heartfelt statement at the time of Mary Tyler Moore’s death in 2017.

Alongside a photo of Moore, her husband Grant Tinker, White, and her husband Allen Ludden, White commented on Twitter after Moore’s death, “Mary Tyler Moore, Grant Tinker, Allen Ludden and I had some of the best times of my life together. She was special.”

When she joined Moore’s self-titled classic sitcom in 1973, White was ecstatic to be part of the ensemble cast. “I was so excited, so happy,” she told the Archive of American Television in 1997. “And so grateful. I started out as an actress in the business, but then I did game shows and talk shows. I became a “television personality.” So everybody was so surprised. ‘Why, Betty can act, isn’t that amazing?’ It really did turn my career completely around.”

RELATED: How Much Does Betty White Make From ‘The Golden Girls’ Reruns?

White has been laying low through the pandemic

Not much has been seen or heard from Betty White throughout the pandemic that began in earnest around the world in March.

The last time the Hot in Cleveland star was heard from was on a March episode of Alan Alda’s “Clear+Vivid” podcast. While her voice sounded a bit weak, she seemed to be having a great time with Alda, remembering old times and laughing.

She told Alda, “I’m well and I’m not doddering around.”

And her last social media post was in May, urging fans to watch a Carol Burnett Show marathon.

White’s representative told Today that same month that the actor was well, with “no one permitted in except those who must. Has helpers who are great with her.”

It’s not known when or if White will say anything publicly about Alex Trebek, and she certainly doesn’t have to. It may be emotionally painful for her to do so, or she may have simply chosen to keep her thoughts private.

As one fan recently said in response to White’s Instagram post on Carol Burnett, “Betty, I heard you were very close to Alex Trebek. I’m so sorry for your loss. Love you Betty.”

That’s as close as perfect to the kind of statement many of Betty White’s fans would collectively like to express to her, America’s national treasure.