‘Full Metal Jacket’ star R. Lee Ermey dead at 74

By AFP 16 April 2018
081208-M-6412J-164 PERSIAN GULF (Dec. 8, 2008) Actor and Marine Corps icon Gunnery Sgt. R. Lee Ermey hands Cpl. Trevor J. Blackburn, assigned to Battalion Landing Team 2/6, 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, a small American flag aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7). The flag was sent from residents of Elnora, Ind., as a token of thanks after the Marines and Sailors from the 26th MEU helped reinforce the townÕs levees during a flood earlier this year. Ermey visited the USS Iwo Jima as a Moral, Welfare and Recreation event for deployed troops during the holiday season. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Patrick M. Johnson-Campbell/Released)

US actor and retired Marine R. Lee Ermey, best known for his role as foul-mouthed Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket," has died, his manager said Sunday. He was 74.

Manager Bill Rogin said the Golden Globe nominee Ermey died from complications of pneumonia.

“It is with deep sadness that I regret to inform you all that R. Lee Ermey (“The Gunny”) passed away this morning from complications of pneumonia,” he said in a statement on Twitter.

“He will be greatly missed by all of us. Semper Fi, Gunny. Godspeed,” he wrote, referencing the motto of the United States Marines Corps, in which Ermey served from 1961 to 1971 when he was medically discharged.

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). He went on to appear in some 60 films, often in military-related roles.

Ermey also lent his voice to the likes of the “Toy Story” films as the gung ho plastic soldier Sarge, and “The Simpsons.”

A board member of the powerful National Rifle Association, Ermey also hosted weapons-related TV shows such as the History Channel’s “Lock n’ Load with R. Lee Ermey” and “GunnyTime with R. Lee Ermey” on the Outdoor Channel. DM


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