Bob Barker: A Century of Life and Legacy

In the year 1972, a lot was happening – iconic songs dominating the charts, a scandal in the White House, new space exploration, and a charismatic game show host giving away brand new cars on The Price is Right for under $4000. That host was Bob Barker – a household name who captivated audiences for 35 years. And this year, Barker is celebrating his 100th birthday – an absolutely remarkable milestone.

Bob Barker’s life began on an Indian reservation in South Dakota. During World War II, he trained as a fighter pilot in the United States Navy Reserve, where he met his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Jo Gideon. They married in 1945, and after leaving the Navy, Barker pursued an economics degree.

Barker’s journey to fame started when game show producer Ralph Edwards noticed him hosting a radio show in Los Angeles. Edwards was looking for a new host for Truth or Consequences, and Barker fit the bill perfectly. From 1956 to 1975, Barker delighted audiences with his charm and wit on the show. He also hosted the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants starting from 1967. However, it was in 1972 when Barker stepped onto the stage of The Price is Right that he and the show soared to superstardom. With Barker as the host, The Price is Right became the longest-running game show in history. Barker’s talents were not limited to hosting alone – he became an executive producer in 1988 and received numerous awards, including 14 Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Game Show Host and four Emmys for his role as executive producer.

Partnerships and Philanthropy

During an interview, Barker fondly remembered his late wife, Dorothy Jo Gideon. He credited her for his successful career, saying, “She gave me the confidence to even try to do what I set out to do. She didn’t just urge me on, she worked right at my side.” Sadly, Gideon passed away from lung cancer in 1981, leaving behind her husband of 36 years.

Bob Barker found love once again with Nancy Burnet, his partner of 40 years. Burnet believes that Barker’s limited use of medication over the years has contributed to his good health. Despite being 99 years old, Barker only takes one prescription medication for his thyroid. His dedication to a healthy lifestyle, including being a vegetarian, has played a significant role in his well-being and vitality.

Throughout his career, Barker has made numerous guest appearances, including a memorable visit to The Price is Right on his 90th birthday. His enthusiasm for the show never waned, and his infectious energy and passion for entertaining audiences were key to its success.

Beyond the glitz and glamour of show business, Bob Barker has used his platform to advocate for animal rights. Inspired by his late wife, who was ahead of her time in terms of ethical choices, Barker has made a lasting impact in this realm. Through his DJ&T Foundation, named after his wife and mother, Barker actively supports animal rights organizations and has donated millions of dollars to establish animal-rights curricula in law schools, including prestigious institutions like Harvard, Columbia, and Northwestern. Barker’s partner, Nancy Burnet, is also a strong advocate for animal welfare, and together they campaign against animal entertainment and work to raise awareness about the mistreatment of animals.

Bob Barker’s incredible journey spans almost a century, marked by numerous achievements and contributions. His impact on the world, both as an entertainer and an animal activist, is truly unrivaled. We are privileged to have such a compassionate and dedicated individual like Barker, who utilizes his celebrity status to improve the lives of innocent animals.