Legendary ‘The Price Is Right’ Host Bob Barker Dead at 99
Bob Barker, who became a household name over the course of decades of hosting the iconic television game show The Price Is Right, has died. TMZ reports that the legendary host died "peacefully" at his home in Los Angeles on Saturday morning (Aug. 26).
A representative for Barker tells the celebrity news outlet that Barker died of natural causes. The legendary broadcaster was 99 years old.
Best known for his run on The Price Is Right, Barker got his start in radio early on in his career before producer Ralph Edwards discovered him while listening to his radio show. Edwards hired him as a TV host, and Barker went on to a career that included hosting Truth or Consequences, which he hosted from 1956 until 1974. According to Biography.com, Barker began his run on The Price Is Right in 1972, hosting the show and serving as producer until his retirement in 2007.
Barker's trademark introduction to each new contestant, "Come on down! You're the next contestant on The Price Is Right!" became one of the most recognizable signature lines in television.
Barker also served as the longtime host for both the Miss U.S.A. and Miss Universe pageants, and he made a number of other television appearances over the years, oftentimes playing himself. His additional credits included How I Met Your Mother, Futurama, The Nanny, Martial Law and many others. He also appeared in the Adam Sandler film Happy Gilmore.
Barker was also known for his longtime commitment to animal rights causes. PETA issued a statement to TMZ after Barker's death, saying in part, "Bob's influence on the entertainment industry is indisputable, but what mattered to him most was using his voice and prominent position to protect animals. Of course, everyone is familiar with his 'spay and neuter your pets' sign-off on The Price Is Right — a show where he refused to allow fur prizes — but he was also one of the first stars to go vegetarian, more than 30 years ago."
"...His generous donation allowed PETA to open its West Coast headquarters, the Bob Barker Building, in 2012, and it stands as a testament to his legacy and profound commitment to making the world a kinder place," the statement adds. "To us — and to so many animals around the world — Bob will always be a national animal rights treasure."
Funeral services for Bob Barker have not been announced.