(TotalConservative.com) – Iconic television personality Bob Barker has died at 99 years of age. The ever-affable Barker is most famous for hosting “The Price is Right” from 1972 to 2007. Prior to that show Barker hosted “Truth or Consequences” for 20 years.
This amazing career run earned Barker a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the “most durable performer” in television. Audiences connected to Barker’s plainspoken way, witty improvisations and quips with the contestants. Barker was hired by Ralph Edwards to host “Truth or Consequences” in 1956 despite having no television experience. Edwards believed in Barker and every year to celebrate the day he hired Barker they’d drink a toast over lunch.
Barker was born in Darrington, Washington on the 12th of December, 1923. His mother, Matilda, was a schoolteacher and he grew up primarily on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation, earning him membership in the tribe. In the year 1929 Barker’s father, Byron, was tragically killed in a workplace accident when the electrical power foreman fell from a utility pole. His mother would re-marry and move the family to Missouri eight years later. This fateful move saw 15 year old Robert W. Barker meet Dorothy Jo Gideon who would become his wife in 1945. Barker recalled taking her to see Ella Fitzgerald on their first date. Barker said from the day of that concert until the day she died from lung cancer in 1981 they “were never separated.”
The couple did have at least one brief separation although not by choice but by World War II. Barker enlisted to serve his country as a fighter pilot in the Navy. When he returned from battle he earned his college degree summa cum laude in economics. As famous as Barker was on television, he managed to reach an even higher level of fame with his one and only film appearance. He played himself in the 1996 film “Happy Gilmour” in which he shared scenes and a legendary fist fight with the titular Adam Sandler character. Barker said from that day forward fans would ask him if he “could really beat up” Sandler.
Barker’s biggest passion was fighting for animal rights. The avid supporter of animals refused to appear on the 1987 Miss USA pageant he was hosting if any real fur was to be worn. He testified before Congress on behalf of banning elephants used in traveling shows to give patrons rides. He donated to animal related causes and famously took to always ending “The Price is Right” episodes by saying “help control the pet population. Have your pet spayed or neutered!”
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