R. Lee “Gunny” Ermey, 74, will take his place a long side other American soldiers in the National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., at 10 a.m. Jan.18, 2019.
Ermey, best known for his role in such movies as “Full Metal Jacket,” and “Apocalypse Now,” died April 15, 2018, at his home in Santa Monica, Calif.
His family learned this week that he will be awarded full military honors for his service in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam War, said his brother Jack Ermey of San Clemente, Calif.
Jack said his brother’s friend, Retired Sgt. Gene Overstreet was responsible for ‘Gunny’s’ Arlington cemetery service.
“My brother was a big supporter of non-profit groups that helped veterans, including military organizations like Young Marines, where he served as a board member,” Jack said. He was also on the board of the NRA.
He joined the U.S. Marine Corps when he was 17.
A self-avowed troublemaker, R. Lee was given a choice by a local judge to go to juvey or join the military, Jack said. “He chose the Marines and the rest is history.”
“We grew up near Pumpkin Center just north of Granger and Gunny attended school. The rest of us attended Zillah schools,” Jack said. The six sons of Betty and John Ermey served in the military during the Vietnam area, three in the Marines, two in the Air Force and one in the Army.
“Ronald (Lee) was the famous one,” said Jack.
He starred in more than 70 films, and lead and directed several television programs on the History Channel.
“Last month his street was named after him in Palmdale, Calif,” Jack said.
He is survived by his wife, Nila, six children and 12 grandchildren.