Bob Barker is best-known for his tenure as host of “The Price Is Right” on CBS from 1972 to 2007. Before that, he hosted “Truth or Consequences” from 1956 to 1974! In all, he’s hosted six different programs over his fifty-year career. During that time, he’s earned 29 awards, including 19 Emmys and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Hopefully, this super star will be around to win hearts for years to come!
1. Robert William Barker was born on December 12, 1923, in Darrington, Washington. His mother, Matilda Valandra, was a schoolteacher, and his father was a foreman on the high electrical lines in Washington. He lived most of his younger life on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, where he was an official member of the Sioux tribe, being one-eighth Native American. His father died due to a work accident when Bob was only six years old, and his mother remarried, giving him a half-brother named Kent Valandra
2. After graduating from Central High School in 1941, Bob went to Drury College in Springfield, Missouri, on a basketball scholarship. He was also a member of the Epsilon Beta Chapter of Sigma Nu fraternity. There, he studied economics! Before he could finish his degree, however, he was drafted into the United States Navy as a fighter pilot after World War II broke out. By the time he was going to be assigned to a seagoing squadron, the war had ended, and he was able to go back to school. He graduated Summa Cum Laude after returning to school.
3. On January 12, 1945, Bob Barker married his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Jo Gideon. They remained married until she passed away from lung cancer on October 19, 1981. Their marriage was full of love and laughter, and even 36 years after her death, he still brings flowers to her grave. The two never had children, and Bob never remarried after the loss of his true love.
4. Bob Barker has long been a major proponent of animal rights, and he says that is thanks to his late wife. After her death, he took up the cause to keep her memory alive. When he was working as the host on “The Price Is Right” he convinced the show to stop giving away fur coats as prizes, and they even stopped playing reruns of episodes where coats had been given away. By the end of his time on “The Price Is Right,” he was ending every episode with his signature phrase: “Bob Barker reminding you to help control the pet population. Have your pets spayed or neutered.” In 2013, he donated around $1,000,000 to help three African elephants get from the Toronto Zoo to an animal sanctuary where they could live life the way they should.
5. Bob Barker has a black belt in karate! The only thing more amazing than that is who trained him. Bob Barker was trained for his black belt by none other than Chuck Norris! We’re sure that these two had a grand old time training, and it’s our favorite fact about the amazing Bob Barker.