Kirk Baily has died. A veteran voice actor (often credited under the stage name Bo Williams), Baily was best remembered by live-action audiences for his role on Nickelodeon’s ’90s sitcom Salute Your Shorts, where he played angry, frequently put-upon camp counselor Kevin “Ug” Lee. Per Deadline, Baily died this week of lung cancer, after being diagnosed roughly six months ago. He was 59.
Born in New York, Baily got his start in the entertainment industry in the world of anime, providing English voices for minor characters in a variety of shows in the Gundam universe of robot-battling TV. His voice appeared in the English version of some of the most influential anime shows of the 1980s and ’90s, including Cowboy Bebop, Ghost In The Shell: Stand Alone Complex, and, perhaps most notably, Trigun, where he played series antagonist Knives Millions.
Although Salute Your Shorts wasn’t Baily’s first job in the world of non-anime TV or film production—he’s got a credit as a sound coordinator on cult classic Killer Klowns From Outer Space—it was one of his most prominent, and enduring. As “Ug,” Baily created a character who was both deeply antagonistic and deeply relatable to the kids watching the show, lording his incredibly tiny amounts of power over the campers under his care. Half drill sergeant, half clown, he is, if nothing else, the reason that we’ll never forget that giraffe’s tongues are black.
Baily continued to work, both in front of and behind the camera, long after Salute Your Shorts went off the air in 1992; his voice appears in Frozen, Big Hero 6, and other big-budget animated blockbusters. In addition to working as a drama teacher and coach, and making the occasional appearance in live-action fare, he also reportedly continued to keep in touch with his old Shorts co-stars. appearing at reunions for the show in 2015 and 2019.