Dorothy Jo Gideon Biography – Life, Death and Cause of Death

Dorothy Jo Gideon was born on 25 February 1924 and was 57 years old at the time of her death in 1981 after she died from lung cancer. She was the wife of Bob Barker and had a tremendous impact on the life of the former The Price is Right host, who has described her as the love f his life.

41 years after the death of Dorothy Jo, who during her lifetime was an animal rights activist and a commercial jingle singer, her husband still keeps her memory alive and has decided against having another Mrs. Barker. This has drawn in many people to want to know more about the woman, her life, and how she met her tragic end.

Summary of Dorothy Jo Gideon Biography

  • Full name: Dorothy Josephine Gideon Barker
  • Nickname: DJ
  • Gender: Female
  • Date of birth: 25 February 1924
  • Died: 19 October 1981
  • Dorothy Jo Gideon’s Age at Death: 57 years old
  • Ethnicity: White
  • Nationality: American
  • Zodiac Sign: Pisces
  • Sexual Orientation: Straight
  • Religion: Christianity
  • Marital Status: Married
  • Dorothy Jo Gideon’s Husband: Robert William Barker (Bob Barker)
  • Dorothy Jo Gideon’s Parents: Jack Oliver Gideon (father), Dorothy L. Evans Gideon (mother)

Dorothy Jo Barker was 57 When She Died

Dorothy Jo Gideon was 57 years old when she died in 1981. She was born Dorothy Josephine Gideon Barker on 25 February 1924 in Springfield, Missouri, United States. It was also here that she was brought up by her parents, Jack Oliver Gideon and Dorothy L. Evans Gideon.

Dorothy Jo Gideon
Dorothy Jo Gideon and Bob Barker (Image Source)

Of American nationality and white ethnic extraction, she was listed as the only child of her parents. She got her education from the Central High School in her hometown. While nothing more is known about her subsequent educational pursuits, it is known that she had a career in the entertainment business as well as a singer for commercial jingles.

Often referred to as Dorothy Jo Barker, she took part in some TV Series, including an episode of Its Your Bet in 1972, Tattletales from 1975 to 1976, and another episode of Dinah! in 1979.

Dorothy Jo Gideon and Bob Barker Married in 1945

Dorothy and Bob got married when she was only 20 years old, and Bob was 21. The pair’s paths crossed for the first time when he was only 15 years and Gideon was 14. Barker was still a student at Central High School in Springfield, Missouri, when they met and fell in love, and he took her to a concert organized by Ella Fitzgerald for their first date. Gideon was his classmate when they met after his family moved to Springfield.

In the wake of the second world war in 1945, Barker got leave from the U.S. Navy while he was training as a fighter pilot. He took the chance to elope with the woman he loved in St. Louis, and then on January 12, 1945, they got married.

The marriage between Barker and Gideon was a very happy one, and the man described her as the love of his life. He made it known that they were in love all through, and they were together every day. It was five years after they walked down the aisle that Barker’s career on TV started in 1950.

Dorothy Jo and Her Husband Did Not Have Kids

Bob Barker and Dorothy Jo Gideon lived a better part of their lives together and happily so. In spite of this, they ensured to keep their family as small as the two of them alone. They had no kids and did not see the need to adopt any.

According to the legendary Price Is Right former host, the simple reason why the more than three decades of their marriage did not produce any child was that they were both too busy for kids. More so, he had seen the many issues and troubles that some of his friends who had kids went through with the kids, and so they decided it was not worth it. Not having kids was something that the couple did not regret.

In an interview many years after the death of Dorothy, her husband stated that he opened his doors to 13 ducks, and he could tell that was a lot of work, making him appreciate not having kids. He inherited a love for animals from Dorothy, as even though they did not have kids, they had several dogs together.

When she died, he got into animal rights activism. But before then, Dorothy had stopped wearing fur clothes because of her love for animals, and she became a vegetarian. According to her husband, she became one even before people started thinking of becoming vegetarians. It was the influence of Dorothy that Bob also became a vegetarian.

What is Dorothy Jo Gideon’s Cause of Death?

37 years after they got married, Dorothy Jo Gideon lost her life on October 19, 1981, when she was only 57 years old. She died following complications relating to lung cancer. Her first diagnosis of the condition was first in April, and then after efforts made to save her life failed, she submitted to the ailment six months later.

The death of Gideon affected her husband in many ways, and for the next couple of years, he became a different person; he suffered from depression. Fortunately, Barker recovered from the loss, but he continued to miss his wife and talk about her decades later.

Four years after her death, Barker started the DJ&T Foundation in 1995 in her honor. He founded the non-profit body in memory of the two most important women in his life; his mother and wife; Dorothy Jo and Matilda (Tillie) Valandra. The foundation was created to help cut down the price of spay/neuter in the United States. The organization has since stopped operations, but before then, it gave out millions to local organizations for the purpose for which it was created.

36 years after the death of his wife, Barker, who was 93 at the time in 2017, laid flowers at her grave. He made the walk to the grave with the help of a caregiver, and he remained at the graveside for 20 minutes before leaving.

Someone who can easily be described as a cat with 9 lives, Bob survived multiple strokes, dangerous falls, a couple of cancer scares, and other health issues. Because of this and in preparation for his own death, he has already prepared a resting place for himself beside his late wife, with a tombstone carrying his name and date of birth.

Dorothy’s Husband Has Not Gotten Married a Second Time

Following the death of Dorothy, Bob Barker opted not to get married again. Now 99 years old, he revealed that he had his chance at marriage with the love of his life, and that was enough for him. According to the retired television game show host, there are those who can get married a second and even a third time, but this was not what he wanted to do.

Nonetheless, he has been in some relationships in the past, years after he lost his wife. One such was with a model who worked on Price is Right, Dian Parkinson. They were said to have dated from 1989 to 1991, but Dian filed sexual harassment against the former TV host in 1994. He insisted that although they had an affair, he had never made her do anything she didn’t want to. The case did not continue as the model later dropped her allegations.

The only serious relationship that Bob Barker got into since the passing of Dorothy was with animal rights activist Nancy Burnet after they first met in 1983 at an animal adoption event. The two have been together for close to 4 decades, even though there is almost 20 years age difference between them. The two have continued to have a good relationship many years later, and Nancy has remained ever-supportive of the former host. There has been no talk of marriage between them as he has since made it clear that he believed there should only be one Mrs. Barker.

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