Wheel of Fortune fans have seen a lot more of Maggie Sajak lately. The daughter of the legendary game show host Pat Sajak, she’s been making guest appearances on the show since age 1. But now the blonde beauty has become a regular. Get to know Maggie Sajak, the show’s correspondent and talented country singer.
Pat Sajak Was MIA From Wheel of Fortune When He Got Emergency Surgery in 2019
Wheel of Fortune is one of the world’s longest running TV game shows. It originally aired in 1975 but switched to nighttime viewing in 1981. Pat Sajak has been hosting the show along with Vanna White since its inception as evening entertainment in 1981. His presence is synonymous with the show. And now, so too is his daughter’s.
Videos by Rare
Videos by Rare
The reason for this isn’t as straightforward as you may think. Maggie actually stepped into the limelight after her father was rushed to the hospital for an emergency surgery. He was on a morning walk with Maggie when he felt “excruciating pain.” Later, he discovered that he had a blocked intestine. It was November of 2019.
Maggie Sajak Filled in Vanna White’s High-Heeled Shoes for a Few Shows
While he recovered successfully from the surgery, Wheel of Fortune needed to go on. So, Vanna White temporarily replaced Pat Sajak as the host. But who could replace Vanna White? Why not Maggie, who was blonde, gorgeous, and smart enough to learn how to do the job. She’d been watching the show for years and, as Pat’s daughter, was exposed to what went on behind the scenes.
Maggie Sajak told Yahoo Entertainment that White came over to their house to train her the evening before they taped their first show. “She gave me a little tutorial, like on our refrigerator, of how to press the letters and how hard to press them and all of that,” Maggie said. “She was so gracious in teaching me, and you know, she had a big job to do that week too, filling in for my dad. So, it was a new experience for both of us, and I’m really glad we were able to do that together.”
She added that Pat was relieved to have figured out a quick replacement and that it was all kept in the family. “I mean, you know, he had this emergency that happened and so there was a lot going on, so to kind of be able to simplify it and keep it all rolling. I think he was really thankful for that,” she said.
Maggie’s First Appearance on Wheel of Fortune Was at Age 1
Technically speaking, Maggie had previously experienced what it was like in Vanna White’s shoes. “My brother and I pretended to be Pat and Vanna during a close,” she told Yahoo. “And we were, I don’t know, I think I was like four and he was like eight… It was very cute.”
Since serving as a fill-in during Pat Sajak’s surgery, Maggie has become a regular on Wheel of Fortune. Realizing how likable she is to their audience, the show made her their official social correspondent in 2021. While her IMDb says she’s been with the show since 1996 and for a total of 115 episodes, it wasn’t until the past two years that she had an official role. 1996 refers to when she was 1 year old, and her dad introduced her to the world.
Maggie Sajak Is Also a Country Music Artist
Despite having everything essentially handed to her with Wheel of Fortune, Maggie Sajak has a whole lot more going on. The Maryland native has had a passion for guitar since she was 12. At age 16, she released her first studio single, “First Kiss.” She sings and plays guitar in the country song. Her music video was later debuted on Wheel of Fortune in honor of her 17th birthday.
She recorded “Live Out Loud” in 2013 to raise awareness of cancer. The song was inspired by a teenager, Muriel Walters, who was battling cancer at Johns Hopkins Hospital. After meeting Muriel, Maggie wrote the song to honor her. It was later featured on the TV show Sweet Home Alabama. That same year, Maggie released a music video for her song “Wild Boy.”
Although she hasn’t released new music recently, Maggie Sajak has said she’d like to get back to music. But she’s also stayed busy with school. Back in 2013, she told The Boot that she wanted to pursue medicine like her older brother, Patrick (he became a doctor in 2021).
Maggie Is Almost Finished with Law School
Maggie enrolled at Princeton University in 2013 with the intention of going to medical school. After graduating from Princeton, she completed a postgraduate program at Columbia University. These days, according to her Instagram bio, she’s a law student — but she hasn’t named where she’s studying. Considering how famous she is, that’s probably not a bad idea. According to the Wheel of Fortune’s website, she’s in her final year at law school.
Maggie Sajak is also a dog mom. She has an entire Instagram paged dedicated to her puppy, Jak.
As for if Maggie will eventually replace Vanna White on Wheel of Fortune, that’s completely up in the air. Pat Sajak mentioned retirement not too long ago. And it would make sense for White to move into his spot and Maggie to be the letter queen. But the younger Sajak has a long life ahead of her and her own dreams to fulfill. So, we’ll just have to wait and see.