Renowned gameshow presenter Bob Barker, who achieved the distinction of winning an Emmy Award, and who was closely linked with the shows “The Price Is Right” and “Truth or Consequences” for a span of fifty years, has passed away at the age of 99.
In a statement released on Saturday, Barker’s spokesperson Roger Neal conveyed the following message, “It is with profound sadness that we announce that the World’s Greatest MC who ever lived, Bob Barker has left us.”
Barker’s name found its place in the Guinness Book of World Records due to his uninterrupted tenure as a gameshow host and his distribution of substantial sums of money and prizes throughout his career. This record was held until Alex Trebek exceeded his achievements. For 35 years, Barker led the iconic show “The Price Is Right,” which holds the distinction of being the longest-running gameshow in television history. His tenure came to a close in June 2007.
On “The Price Is Right,” spirited participants were welcomed by the distinctive voice of the announcer to “Come on down” and engage in mini-games centered around estimating the prices of various items.
Barker held a firm stance in support of animal rights and contributed substantial financial resources to initiatives aimed at neutering animals. His well-known sign-off phrase at the conclusion of his shows was, “And remember folks, always spay or neuter your pets!”
Barker maintained a consistent presence on weekday television for an uninterrupted span of 51 years, encompassing his time on “Truth or Consequences.”
His collection of 19 Emmy Awards was a remarkable achievement, with 14 of them recognizing his role as a gameshow host, surpassing the count of any other entertainer. Additionally, he secured four Emmys for his role as an executive producer on “The Price Is Right.” In 1999, Barker was granted a lifetime achievement Emmy for his contributions to Daytime Television.
He credited his widespread appeal to his choice of never engaging in acting roles, with the exception of occasional portrayals of himself, such as in the 1996 Adam Sandler film “Happy Gilmore.” His television productions held a strong emphasis on family involvement. Initially, his first wife and high school sweetheart, Dorothy Jo Gideon, oversaw their creation until her passing due to cancer in 1981. Moreover, he frequently brought his pets to the studio, adding a personal touch to his shows.
Recognizable across multiple generations, his visage was a familiar sight to Americans. The charismatic and genial silver-haired host, characterized by his friendly and approachable demeanor, consistently treated his contestants with genuine enthusiasm and warmth.
Blessed with a deep and captivating voice, he opted for a path in radio following his college years. After exploring various roles, he ultimately gravitated toward the realm of audience-engaging programming.
As conveyed by Barker’s spokesperson Neal to Variety, it was Barker’s desire to forgo both a funeral and a memorial service. His surviving family members include his half-brother Kent Valandra, as well as half-nephews Robert and Chip Valandra, along with half-niece Vickie Valandra Kelly.