Any Marine dopers? Q about drill sargeants

What are/were they really like?

I think the two extremes we’ve seen portrayed in TV & movies would be Sgt. Carter of Gomer Pyle fame and R. Lee Ermey’s character in Full Metal Jacket.

Drill Instructors are very thoroughly screened at one of the tougher schools in the Marine Corps. With all their training and rules on what they can and cannot do, and how to handle situations and training, their personalities DO show through. I have known them professionally and personally, and some of the meanest, toughest, angriest SOB’s in uniform can be an honestly nice guy you’d love to have as a neighbor when they take that cover off. (I have not known female DI’s, but I imagine the same holds true.) One thing I have learned about them: They are the gatekeepers to the future of the Marines, and they want to ensure the next generation of Jarheads is the better than the last. They all are professional screamers. Bad eggs do get through. They are trained in mind games, and lean on the weak to make them do one of two things; get better or get out.

Of the two, R. Lee Ermey was probably closer to the actual, since he WAS an active duty Staff Sergeant, and Drill Instructor at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego. (India Company 3rd Recruit Training Battalion from 1965-67).