His military career earned him several awards, including the National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm, Meritorious Unit Commendation and Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal.
R. Lee Ermey, who played the hard-nosed drill instructor Gunnery Sgt Hartman in the cult Stanley Kubrick film, died this mroning from pneumonia-related complications aged 74. He was generous to everyone around him. Some of his other films include Se7en, Dead Man Walking, Mississippi Burning, On Deadly Ground and the remakes of Willard and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. And, we will honor his memory with hope and kindness. That's what he wanted most of all. Please support your men and women in uniform.
In addition to a long list of contributions to theatrical movies, Ermey also hosted two popular television shows on The History Channel "Mail Call" and "Lock n' Load", along with "Gunny Time" on the Outdoor Channel. His full name was Ronald Lee Ermey. Ermey had this to say about his decision to join the military. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1961 - 1972 and climbed to the rank of Staff Sergeant.
Born in Emporia, Kansas in 1944, Ermey bagged his first acting role while studying drama at the University of Manila in the Philippines, landing a part as a helicopter in Apocalypse Now (1979).
According to Kubrick, Ermey also had a bad vehicle accident one night in the middle of production and was out for four and half months with broken ribs.
Watch some famous scenes featuring Ermey below.
There are many Gunny's, but this one was OURS.
Ermey also did voice-over work for video games such as "Crash Bandicoot" and appeared as the voice of the drill instructor in "Call of Duty: Ghosts", from the immensely popular COD series.