‘Jeopardy!’ Contestant Reveals Amazing Connection to Show (VIDEO)

Ken Jennings and Martha Bath

Jeopardy! has only been back for two weeks, and already, this season has been hit with surprising moments and controversial decisions. But perhaps the most heart-warming moment so far came during the (September 21 episode, when one contestant revealed an amazing secret.

Martha Bath, a retired CPA from Seattle, Washington, came from behind to win Wednesday’s game, but something more incredible happened before that. During the Q&A segment, host Ken Jennings prompted Bath when he asked, “This is not your first rodeo.”

That’s when she revealed her decades-old connection to the long-running game show.

“That is correct,” she said. “Fifty years ago this spring, I was on the original daytime show with Art Fleming in New York.”

“Wow,” Jennings replied as Bath continued, “I won $40 and a set of encyclopedias, and I still have them.”

“You still have the encyclopedias – or the $40?” Jennings joked before adding, “We’re gonna send you home with more than $40 tonight.”

The original daytime version of Jeopardy! debuted on NBC on March 30, 1964, and aired until January 3, 1975. The late actor and broadcaster Art Fleming served as host at the time, staying with the show until 1979. The daily syndicated version premiered in 1984 with Alex Trebek as host.

Bath did indeed leave with more than $40 this time around, as she beat out returning champion Emmett Stanton and sports journalist Christopher Pennant to snatch the victory. Despite going into Final Jeopardy! with just $15,400 compared to Stanton’s $22,000, Bath nailed the correct answer and wagered her entire prize pot, giving her a winning total of $30,800.

“Or, if we count 1972, $30,840,” Jennings quipped.

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