Marines from the Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C. (8th and I) rendered funeral honors for “The Gunny” at Arlington last week.
Born in Kansas in 1944, during the tail end of World War II, Ronald Lee Ermey joined the Marines at age 17 and, after service that included 14 months in Vietnam, was medically retired as a staff sergeant in 1972.
Becoming a near-iconic figure for his portrayal of drill instructor GySgt. Hartman in the 1987 film “Full Metal Jacket,” Ermey went on to host the History Channel’s “Mail Call” and “Lock n’ Load” shows from 2007 to 2009, delving into military arms, customs, and equipment, before moving to host the similar “GunnyTime” on the Outdoor Channel.
Additionally, he was featured in a long-running series of public appearances and spots for Glock and was elected to the board of directors for the National Rifle Association, serving as one of its most popular, and recognizable, members.
Ermey died last April at age 74. His wife, Marianila Ermey, received the U.S. flag from the Marines at his service.
He is buried in Section 82 of Arlington National Cemetery, in Arlington, Virginia.