He actually started hosting his first game show all the way back in 1956, and he only retired from hosting The Price is Right in 2007. That’s 50 years!
And who could forget this classic clip featuring Barker from Happy Gilmore?
Let’s get to know the man behind the legend a little bit better with these 10 facts.
1. Early years.
Barker spent some of his youth on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in Mission, South Dakota. He is 1/8 Sioux.
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2. World War II
Barker enlisted in the Navy and served from 1942-1945, but he didn’t see combat. He said, “I was all ready to go, and when the enemy heard that I was headed for the Pacific, they surrendered.”
3. Over the airwaves.
Barker began working on the radio in college on KTTS-FM in Springfield, Missouri.
Barker is a black belt in karate, and he trained with none other than Chuck Norris for decades. Oh, and by the way, he did his own fight scene in Happy Gilmore.
Barker attended Drury College in Missouri on a basketball scholarship and also joined Navy’s basketball team while he served in the military.
6. Taking a stand.
Barker hosted the Miss USA/Universe pageants from 1966 to 1988 but stepped down when the people who ran the competitions refused to stop giving out fur coats as prizes.
7. Come on down!
CBS renamed Stage 33 “Bob Barker Studio” after he hosted his 5,000th episode of The Price is Right in 1998.
8. Big break.
Barker considers the show Truth or Consequences his big break. He hosted the show from 1956 until 1974.
9. Animal lover.
Barker purchased 460 acres of land in California that will be used as a sanctuary for donkeys.
10. Love story.
Barker first went on a date with his wife Dorothy Jo when he was 15 years old. The two attended an Ella Fitzgerald concert (which is awesome). They were married from 1945 until her death in 1981, when she was 57. Bob Barker said he “never had any inclination to remarry.”
What a guy!