"Full Metal Jacket" star R. Lee Ermey dies at age 74
(LOS ANGELES) — R. Lee Ermey, best known for his role as Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in the 1987 film Full Metal Jacket, has died at the age of 74.
The actor’s longtime manager, Bill Rogin, confirmed the news on Ermey’s Facebook page Sunday, writing, “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 will be greatly missed by all of us… It is extremely difficult to truly quantify all of the great things this man has selflessly done for, and on behalf of, our many men and women in uniform.”
He added, “He has also contributed many iconic and indelible characters on film that will live on forever. Gunnery Sergeant Hartman of Full Metal Jacket fame was a hard and principled man. The real R. Lee Ermey was a family man, and a kind and gentle soul. He was generous to everyone around him. And, he especially cared deeply for others in need.”
Ermey’s Full Metal Jacket co-stars paid tribute to the veteran actor, as well, with Vincent D’Onofrio tweeting, “Ermey was the real deal. The knowledge of him passing brings back wonderful memories of our time together.”
Matthew Modine wrote, “#SemperFidelis Always faithful. Always loyal. Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light. RIP amigo. PVT. Joker.”
Along with his Golden Globe-nominated role in Full Metal Jacket, Ermey starred in such movies as Mississippi Burning, Prefontaine and Se7en. He also voiced Sarge, the leader of the toy soldiers in the Toy Story movies.
Ermey was a member of the military in real life, having served the Marines as a staff sergeant and a drill instructor, including 14 months in Vietnam.
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