Bob Barker Is 'Happy' & 'Engaged' While Longtime Girlfriend Says 'He's Very Sturdy' as He Reaches 99
In December 2022, Bob Barker will turn 99, and despite all the difficulties he has faced, the former game show host has a lot to be grateful for. Recently, Barker's longtime partner, Nancy Burnet, shared some interesting thoughts about her partner's life today. Here are the details.
A famous entertainment icon, Bob Barker was a force to reckon with during his time as a television game show host. He was best known for his work on CBS's "The Price Is Right." Even though he eventually retired, the legend's commentating talent still greatly impacts show business.
Undoubtedly, Barker enjoyed a stellar career, but his professional achievements were not the only things he was known for. The showbiz legend had a love life he was very proud of and vocal about throughout his years.
Bob Barker is pictured with his wife, Dorothy Jo Barker. | Source: Getty Images
He was happily married to Dorothy Jo Gideon for decades. When Barker was not handing gifts to contestants on the hit CBS game show, he was away with his beautiful wife.
The lovebirds walked down the aisle in 1945, and even though they did not have kids because they did not have time for children, Barker and Gideon stayed married for 36 years.
Unfortunately, their beautiful union ended due to a tragedy. On October 19, 1981, Gideon died at 57, six months after she was diagnosed with lung cancer.
Bob Barker is pictured with his wife Dorothy Jo Barker and their dog. | Source: Getty Images
It was a devastating time for Barker, who confessed that Gideon was always with him until her demise. For the next couple of years, the former game show host would keep his late wife's memory alive and always reject the option of tying the knot again.
Decades after Gideon's death, Barker has still not remarried, but the icon is in a happy relationship with his longtime partner, Nancy Burnet.
Bob Barker and his wife Dorothy Jo (1924 - 1981) show off part of their extensive collection of military-themed ceramic figurines on November 4, 1977.
The duo's romance has lasted for four decades, and from the look of things, Barker and Burnet are growing stronger with each passing day. Here are more details about Barker's life, including his relationship with Burnet.
BARKER'S RELATIONSHIP WITH BURNET/ DETAILS OF HIS LIFE TODAY
Barker and Burnet first crossed paths at an animal adoption event in March 1983. It was easy for the duo to form a connection upon meeting, being big lovers of animals.
The pair started dating shortly after and have remained together ever since. Forty years later, Barker and Burnet do not seem to be going their separate ways anytime soon.
Bob Barker poses for photographers with Nancy Burnet, Director of United Activists for Animal Rights, after a hearing on the "Captive Elephant Accident Prevention Act of 1999" on Capitol Hill, June 13, 2000, in Washington. | Source: Getty Images
They have also put their shared love for animals to good use. The duo is proud owners of DonkeyLand, an almost 2000-acre rescue, sanctuary, and wildlife preserve dedicated to saving wild Burros and their habitats. Despite being through a tragic loss in the past, Barker seems to be in a good place.
His girlfriend confirmed it during an August 2022 interview with Closer weekly. According to Burnet:
"He's doing pretty well…he's happy, he's engaged. He's just doing remarkably well for almost 99 years of age."
PAWS co-founder Ed Stewart (left) held a news conference with Bob Barker, who funded the elephants' trip to PAWS, and animal rights activist Nancy Burnet, Barker's partner, on October 21, 2013. | Source: Getty Images
Following Burnet's confession, netizens could not be happier for the retired "The Price Is Right" star, seeing that he has had some challenges, including his health. Over the past few years, Barker has suffered various health issues like a stroke, skin cancer, prostate surgery, and a partially blocked left carotid artery.
Barker may be in a long-time happy relationship, but his sentimental attachment to his late wife remains unchanged.
Bob Barker and Nancy Burnet attend the Animal Defenders International gala on October 13, 2012, in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
Barker has also suffered falls at home, which left him with stitches and head and knee injuries. Then, in 2019, a few months after another fall in his Los Angeles home, the icon was spotted in a wheelchair in Beverly Hills while getting helped into a van. Thankfully, he has not been alone throughout these difficult moments in his life, as Burnet is always beside him.
INSIDE BARKER'S RETIREMENT
As one gets older, it is expected that their strength and stamina diminish, and for Barker, it has not been any different. After many active years in the entertainment industry, his fading strength and health challenges led to his retirement in his 80s. During an interview, Burnet once revealed:
"He had a long career, and it became very exhausting to do the show. You know, that comes as part of growing older; you just don't have the stamina. He worked until he was in his 80s."
Bob Barker during "The Price is Right" 34th Season Premiere - Taping at CBS Television City in Los Angeles, California, United States. | Source: Getty Images
For Barker, being a host on "The Price Is High" for many years caused him to have a great attachment to the show. Over a decade after his 2007 retirement, Barker still occasionally tuned in.
The icon's friend revealed to Closer Weekly that Barker liked the host, Drew Carey, and enjoyed the show.
Bob Barker arrives at the National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards Gala at Millennium Biltmore Hotel on December 6, 2015, in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
But unfortunately, in the August 2022 interview with Closer Weekly, Burnet admitted that her partner had stopped watching "The Price is Right." In her words:
"It's different. It's nothing like it was. So, it would be entirely different. He'd rather watch a movie or something now."
A LOVE THAT NEVER DIES
In life, some incidents can never be forgotten, one of which is the death of a loved one. Barker may be in a long-time happy relationship, but his sentimental attachment to his late wife remains unchanged.
Bob Barker attends The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce & The Hollywood Sign Trust's 90th Celebration of the Hollywood Sign at Drai's Hollywood on September 19, 2013, in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
In October 2017, the former television presenter visited Gideon's grave at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles to commemorate the 36th anniversary of his late wife's death.
Pictures capturing the visit showed Barker, overcome with grief, holding onto a large bouquet of daisies. The former "Truth or Consequence" host paid respect to his Central High School sweetheart for 20 minutes while a female caretaker stood vigil. Indeed, it was a memorable occasion for Barker.
It is not surprising to see how much Barker misses his late wife, as their first outing dates back to when the entertainment legend was only 15 years old, at an Ella Fitzgerald concert in Missouri.
Bob Barker attends the "Lion Ark" premiere at the Charles Aidikoff Screening Room on November 15, 2013, in Beverly Hills, California. | Source: Getty Images
Six years later, Barker took a leave from the Navy and eloped with Gideon, eventually walking down the aisle. Sadly, they could not spend forever together. Nevertheless, Gideon will always be a part of Barker's life, and the latter will always cherish their shared memories.
While he keeps Gideon's legacy alive, he has Burnet by his side. Hopefully, their love remains intact for the rest of their lives.