Beloved television icon Bob Barker, best known for his 35-year stint as the host of the game show “The Price Is Right,” has died at the age of 99. Barker’s representative confirmed his death, praising him as the “World’s Greatest MC who ever lived.” CBS, the network that broadcasted “The Price Is Right,” shared their grief over the loss of a valued member of their community.
Barker’s legacy reaches far beyond his impressive broadcasting career. He was a passionate advocate for animal rights, and his commitment to this cause was a significant aspect of his public image. His representative noted that daytime television had lost one of its most iconic figures.
Reports indicate that Barker died peacefully from natural causes at his home in Los Angeles. Barker had faced health challenges in the past, including a fall at his home in 2019 and two hospitalizations for severe back pain in 2018. Despite these health issues, Barker’s manager reported that his condition was improving under medical care.
Born as Robert William Barker on December 12, 1923, in Darrington, Washington, Barker spent his early life in Mission, South Dakota, on the Rosebud Indian Reservation. His family later relocated to Springfield, Missouri, where Barker secured a basketball scholarship to Drury College. Barker’s education was interrupted by World War II, during which he served as a Naval Aviation Cadet.
Barker’s broadcasting career took off at a local radio station during his time at Drury College. Barker’s major breakthrough came in 1956 when he became the host of “Truth or Consequences.” He went on to host several other shows before securing the role on “The Price is Right” in 1972, which solidified his status as a television legend.
Barker maintained a successful career, earning 19 Daytime Emmys for “The Price is Right” and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999. He was also inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 2004.
In addition to his hosting career, Barker made appearances in various TV shows and films, often playing himself. He was also a committed animal rights activist, stepping down as host of the “Miss Universe” and “Miss USA” pageants in 1987 due to their use of fur coats as prizes. Barker established the DJ&T foundation in 1994 to fund spay and neuter clinics, demonstrating his dedication to animal welfare.