William Lance LeGault, Senior
May 2, 1935
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Died||September 10, 2012 (aged 77)|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Other names||W. L. LeGault|
|Occupation||Film, television, and voice actor|
|Spouse(s)||Teresa LeGault (1984–2012; his death); 4 children|
William Lance LeGault (May 2, 1935 – September 10, 2012), sometimes credited as W. L. LeGault, was an American film and television actor, best known as U.S. Army Colonel Roderick Decker in the 1980s American television series The A-Team.
LeGault was born May 2, 1935 in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Mary Jean (née Kovachevich; died December 21, 1980) and Ernest Legault (1906–1941). LeGault's father, Ernest, was French-Canadian from Moose Creek, Ontario, Canada. LeGault's mother, Mary, was born in Illinois, the daughter of immigrants from the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The family was poor. He lived in an orphanage for a time between his father's death in 1941 and when his mother remarried in 1943. He started working at 11, and was fired from the railroad at 13 when they discovered he was not 18 as he had claimed.
He grew up in Chillicothe, Illinois and graduated from Chillicothe Township High School in 1955. He received a full football scholarship to the Municipal University of Wichita, where he majored in business administration for two years before dropping out to pursue a music career.
LeGault's first three feature films were Elvis Presley movies, Girls! Girls! Girls! (1962) in which he was a stunt double for Elvis Presley, Kissin' Cousins (1964), and Viva Las Vegas (1964). He also appeared in Presley's 1968 NBC television special Elvis (also known as Elvis' 68 Comeback Special), where he sat at the side of the stage playing a tambourine. He appeared in Roustabout, another Presley film, as a carnival barker. In 1969, he appeared as Iago in the UK stage version of Jack Good's Catch My Soul: Rock Othello, and played Iago again in the 1974 Metromedia film version of Catch My Soul.
He starred in television series and in television movies and was known mainly for portraying military personnel, especially officers. His best known television role was in the 1980s series The A-Team as Colonel Roderick Decker—a United States Army colonel who tried to catch the fugitive Vietnam veterans. He played the role of Colonel Decker from 1983–86. He also had a recurring role in another 1980s hit television series, Magnum, P.I., as a United States Marine Corps colonel, Colonel "Buck" Greene.
LeGault was on screen in a variety of programs including the short lived series Werewolf in 1987. In 1980, he starred with Kenny Rogers in the television movie The Gambler. He made a few appearances on the second season of Dynasty as gangster Ray Bonning. He appeared on Knight Rider in the pilot episode "Knight of the Phoenix" and appeared (as a different character) in the season 2 episode "Knight in Shining Armor"; and took on the roles of three different bad-guy characters in Airwolf (in To Snare a Wolf, Sweet Britches and Wildfire) as well as doing the voice-overs for the series' 1st Season "saga sell" teasers. He guest-starred on yet another hit 1980s television series Dallas as Al Halliday in 1989. In 1984 he also starred in Murder, She Wrote, Season 4 Episode 20.
He made many guest appearances on television series, his appearances ranged from The Rockford Files (episodes "Claire" and "A Deadly Maze"), Gunsmoke, Barbary Coast, Logan's Run, Police Woman, Battlestar Galactica, The Incredible Hulk (episode "The Antowuk Horror"), Wonder Woman, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, The Dukes of Hazzard (episode "The Runaway"), T. J. Hooker, Tales of the Gold Monkey, Voyagers!, MacGyver, Simon & Simon, Sledge Hammer!, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Renegade and Crusade. He appeared on Land of the Giants in the first-season episode "Underground" as a police officer.
LeGault's last role was in the 2013 film Prince Avalanche, and the film is dedicated to him.
On the Knight Rider season 1 DVD pilot commentary, creator Glen A. Larson mentioned that Lance LeGault had "a voice that was four octaves lower than God's." This trait helped him obtain roles (often) as a villain or other "tough guy". It also resulted in a side career doing voice-over work. LeGault's trademark voice was at one point featured on self-guided tour cassettes at Elvis Presley's Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee. In the video game world, he was heard as the voice of Major Manson in the 1998 video game Battlezone II: Combat Commander.
He provided the voice of Junior the Buffalo in Disney's Home on the Range (2004). He also voiced Yank Justice in the nine-episode, 30-minute 1985 series Bigfoot and the Muscle Machines, part of Marvel Productions' Super Sunday block.
LeGault died from heart failure on Monday, September 10, 2012, at his home in Los Angeles at the age of 77, survived by his wife of 28 years Teresa, and their four children Mary, Teresa, Marcus and William Lance Junior.
- Girls! Girls! Girls! (1962) - Bass Player at Nightclub (uncredited)
- Kissin' Cousins (1964) - Hillbilly Dancer (uncredited)
- Viva Las Vegas (1964) - Son of the Lone Star State (uncredited)
- Roustabout (1964) - Barker (uncredited)
- The Swinger (1966) - Warren
- The Young Runaways (1968) - Curly
- Sweet Charity (1969) - Dancer (uncredited)
- Catch My Soul (1974) - Iago
- Rockford Files (1975-1977, TV Series) - Phil D'Agosto / Stone (credited as W.L. LeGault)
- Logan's Run (1977, TV Series, Episode: "The Judas Goat") - Matthew
- The Kentucky Fried Movie (1977) - Toy Robot (segment "A Fistful of Yen") (voice, uncredited)
- Coma (1978) - Vince
- French Quarter (1978) - Tom / Burt
- The French Atlantic Affair (1979) - Lester Foyles
- Captain America (1979) - Harley
- Magnum, P.I. (1980-1988, TV Series) - Colonel Buck Greene / Agent John W. Newton
- Amy (1981) - Edgar Wanbuck
- Stripes (1981) - Col. Glass
- Dynasty (1981-1982, TV Series) - Ray Bonning
- Fast-Walking (1982) - Lieutenant Barnes
- Knight Rider (1982, TV Series) - Vernon Gray
- The A-Team (1983-1986, TV Series) - Colonel Roderick Decker
- Airwolf (1984-1985, TV Series) - Narrator / D.G. Bogard / Noble Flowers / Sheriff J.J. Bogan
- Iron Eagle (1986) - General Edwards
- Breakdown (1997) - Victor Nardi
- MacGyver (1987, Episode: "Jack in the Box") - Sheriff 'Bull' Bodine
- Star Trek: The Next Generation (1989, Episode: "The Emissary") - Capt. K'Temoc
- Nightmare Beach (1989) - Rev. Bates
- Columbo (1992, Episode: "No Time to Die") - Police Captain
- Shadow Force (1992) - Chief Thorpe
- Two Bits and Pepper (1995) - Pepper (voice)
- The Silencers (1996) - Kirby
- Dark Breed (1996) - Cutter
- Executive Target (1997) - Moore
- Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (1997) - Elder God #1
- Scorpio One (1998) - Sen. Treadwell
- Crusade (1999, Episode: "Each Night I Dream of Home") - Senator Jacob Redway
- Home on the Range (2004) - Junior, the Buffalo (voice)
- The Legend of Sasquatch (2006) - Cletus McNabb (voice)
- Stuntmen (2009) - Leo Supreme
- Prince Avalanche (2013) - Truck Driver (final film role)
- Profile, google.com; accessed November 8, 2015.
- "Official Lance LeGault website Biography". LanceLeGault.com. Archived from the original on September 15, 2012. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
- "Archive". Nl.newsbank.com. Retrieved September 12, 2012.
- Kleiner, Dick (March 23, 1978). "Ask Dick Kleiner (Another Good Villain)". The Prescott Courier. 98 (70). Prescott, Arizona. Newspaper Enterprise Association. p. 5. Retrieved February 15, 2009.
- Marianne Gillespie. "Lance LeGault dies in California - News - Journal Star - Peoria, IL". Pjstar.com. Retrieved March 14, 2017.
- "Lance LeGault Obituary - Frazier Park, California". Legacy.com. Retrieved March 14, 2017.
- Lance LeGault on IMDb
- Minovitz, Ethan (September 12, 2012). "Lance LeGault was Junior in Home on the Range". Big Cartoon News. Archived from the original on December 3, 2012. Retrieved September 12, 2012.
- "Funeral Services Pending Character Actor Lance LeGault". Bhcourier.com. September 11, 2012. Archived from the original on September 14, 2012. Retrieved September 12, 2012.