BY _ MAHI
As the host of "Wheel of Fortune," Pat Sajak has been one of the most recognizable faces on American television for more than 40 years. On Monday he announced he would retire in 2019.
Mr Sajak, 76, posted on Twitter: "The time has come. Our 41st season starting in September will be my last, I have made up my mind.
For most of Mr. Sajak's tenure as host, "Wheel of Fortune" has been one of the most popular syndicated programs on American TV.
With its catchphrase "Can I buy a vowel?" It became a pop cultural hit and spawned a board game, toys, clothing, and the offshoot program "Celebrity Wheel of Fortune".
In a statement released Monday evening, Suzanne Prete, Sony Pictures Television's senior vice president of game shows, said the company was "incredibly grateful and proud to have Pat as our host for all these years."
After his final season, Mr. Sajak agreed to remain an advisor for an additional three years, Ms. Prete said.
After Mr. Sajak retired, it was unknown who would take over the hosting duties.
On Monday night, Mr Sajak's regular co-host Vanna White remained silent on social media. In 2019, when Mr. Sajak required an urgent surgery to treat a blocked bowel, she briefly replaced him.
Mr. Sajak's daughter, Maggie Sajak, took over Ms. White's responsibility for the puzzleboard, while Ms. White stood in for Mr. Sajak. Ms. Sajak posts digital content for the program as a social correspondent.