Military Makeover Remembers Host R. Lee Ermey, The Gunny
DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla: The entire family at ongoing TV series Military Makeover mourns the death of its cherished drill instructor, actor and veteran advocate R. Lee Ermey, The Gunny, at age 74.We at BrandStar are deeply saddened by the loss of our beloved Gunny, said Mark Alfieri, Founder and CEO of BrandStar, creators and producers of Military Makeover, which airs on Lifetime TV. His impact over the last 13 seasons of Military Makeover is far-reaching. His commitment to helping veterans is what made him so special and infectiously charismatic in every episode, on set and with every military family. We are blessed to have had the honor of partnering with R. Lee Ermey over the past five years. He made a positive difference in the lives of our veterans, and he will be remembered forever in our hearts as The Gunny.
Ermey loved what he did on the show, seeing it more as a calling than an occupation.
I can't call this a job, Ermey said recently about his Military Makeover duties. It's a habit that I have. But it's a fun habit that helps my veterans, and anything that helps my veterans, I'm game for.
Ermey shot to fame for his indelible portrayal of hard-nosed Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's epic 1987 Vietnam War film Full Metal Jacket. Those who got the chance to know him say that the real R. Lee Ermey was a humble, kindhearted man—nothing like the menacing Hartman.
They told me I was retired from the Marine Corps—I just never retired, Ermey said. I just kept working. I associate myself more with these people than I do anybody else in the world. That's the way it is.