I met the Gunny several years ago, and he was NOTHING like I thought he would be.
I guess it was near Christmas, 2008, and he came into the studio with some San Diego Marines, for Toys for Tots.
My only experience with him up until that time, was this:
I will confess, I have not been a Marine, so I have no idea if it's really like this in boot-camp, but I have my suspicions.
Most of the people I know who have served tell me it is JUST like this, and that it needs to be, The Gunny is trying to keep you alive.
Anywho, When he came in, I was completely unprepared for the real, live R. Lee.
He was dashing.
He was charming.
He was a true gentleman.
He knew how to treat a lady, something that is in short-supply these days.
Don't get me wrong, the Gunnery Sergeant above was in there, but he sure wasn't the whole picture.
R. Lee was everything you want in a gentleman and a Marine. He had a line of demarcation between tough-as-nails, and a caring, loving, giving man. I think he went all OVER the place for Toys for Tots, for years...and he didn't HAVE to. He did it because it was the right thing to do. He knew that people would fork-over those toys if he asked.
He may not have known how to spell my name, but every time he came in, he called me by name. He was THAT guy.