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Stargate SG-1 star Cliff Simon dies aged 58 in kiteboarding accident


Cliff was best known for playing Ba’al on Stargate SG-1 (Picture: Sky)

Stargate SG-1 star Cliff Simon has died aged 58 in a kiteboarding accident.

The actor, best known for playing villain Ba’al on the sci-fi show, died on March 9 at Topanga Beach in California, with his wife Colette confirming the news.

Writing on her husband’s Facebook page, Colette said: ‘It is with unimaginable heartbreak that I am sharing with you, that my beloved husband, Cliff Simon, passed away at 12:30pm on Tuesday March 9, 2021. 

‘He was at Topanga Beach, California and sadly passed away after a tragic kiteboarding accident. 

‘He was known to most of you on this page as the villain you loved to hate, Ba’al, from Stargate SG-1. But as he said, “acting is what I do, it’s only a part of who I am.”

‘And he was SO much more –  a true original, an adventurer, a sailor, swimmer, dancer, actor, author. There is a gaping hole where he once stood on this earth.  He was loved by too many to mention and had a great impact on so many lives.  He was an amazing and much loved brother, uncle, nephew, cousin and friend.

Cliff died in a kiteboarding accident (Picture: Facebook)

‘He was and always will be the love of my life and there is unimaginable heartbreak.

‘A small saving grace to this tragedy is that he was doing one of the things he loved most and passed away on the beach near the water, which was his temple.

‘I know this is a shock and will hit hard but we hope you can respect our need for privacy at this time.

‘I will end with this verse which Cliff loved and lived his life by: “I would rather be ashes than dust!I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dryrot. I would rather be a super meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet, The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time.”’

Cliff was brought back for 15 episodes and a film role (Picture: MGM)

Colette asked for the family’s privacy to be respected during this time.

Cliff, born in South Africa in 1962, was a keen swimmer and gymnast as a child, and after reaching national level in both, he decided to give up gymnastics as a teenager to focus on swimming.

After emigrating to the UK, he was chosen to swim in the British international squad and qualified for the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

However, he decided to quit and returned to South Africa, where he entered the air force, and later landed a job teaching windsurfing and waterskiing at a hotel.

A gymnastics role in a hotel production led to a career in performing, with Cliff even performing as a dancer and acrobat at Paris’s Moulin Rouge.

Cliff was previously an Olympic-level swimmer (Picture: John M. Heller/Getty Images)

Cliff starred on the South African soap Egoli: Place of Gold for six years before he moved to the States, where he landed a guest star role with Don Johnson on the hit TV series, Nash Bridges.

After this, he won the guest role of Ba’al on Stargate SG-1, but the character was so popular that Ba’al was brought back for six seasons of the show, as well as the movie Stargate: Continuum. 

Cliff went on to star in shows including NCIS, Castle and 24, and hosted the History Channel documentary Uncharted Mysteries.

He also was popular on the convention scene, and recently donated the proceeds from personal shout-out videos to non-profit organisations preventing anti-Asian hate crimes. 


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