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The Last Hours of Elvis' life

Please note that all times are based upon “first hand recollections” taken during the time period of August 16, 1977 through October 27, 197. All times are “CST” which is Central Standard Time for Memphis Tennessee. 


Tuesday, August 16, 1977:


12:00 (Midnight):Elvis, along with his girlfriend Ginger Alden, return to Graceland after Elvis requested and received “dental assistance” (note: it has been reported that Elvis was given a “temporary crown”) earlier at (approximately) 10:30 pm via Elvis’ Dentist Dr. Lester Hofman.


2:30 am:Elvis calls his Doctor and asks for specific painkillers. Elvis stated that he had a dental procedure done earlier, as could not sleep and needed his rest for the upcoming tour, and was experiencing tooth pain. The Doctor issues the prescription for the medication requested by Elvis and Elvis sends his step-brother (i.e. Ricky Stanley) to pick up six Dilaudid pills for Elvis from the “all night pharmacy” located at Baptist Memorial Hospital.


4:00 am: Elvis still cannot sleep at which point he awakens his “first cousin” Billy Smith, along with Billy Smith’s wife Jo, and “invites” them to play racquetball with him. Elvis, being heavily medicated, tired, and anxious about leaving later on in the day for his first tour since the “press onslaught” concerning the book “Elvis What Happened” plays the racquetball game while barely moving.


4:30 am: Elvis, after completing the game of racquetball, stops at the piano (located directly outside the racquetball court), and plays two gospel songs (note: there is disputes about what songs were played but it has been stated that the “belief” is that Elvis played; Precious Lord, How Great Thou Art, and/or Old Rugged Cross) along with one “non-gospel song” entitled “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.”


5:00 am: Elvis, along with his girlfriend Ginger Alden, say goodnight and go directly up to Elvis’ bedroom. Elvis then takes a “package of pills” (note: Elvis routinely had his medications put into “packages” so that he did not have to rummage through medication bottles and possibly take the wrong medications). This specific “package of pills” was put together by his personal Physician and was to be taken “twice each day”.


7:00 am: Elvis takes a second “package of pills” (note: Elvis had separate “package of pills” for “pain” and, as example, one for “sleep’ and one for “wake up”, etc.).


8:00 am:Elvis is still unable to sleep at which point he calls his Aunt, Delta Mae Biggs who also resides at Graceland, to “bring him a third package of pills”. She arrives, with the third package of pills, a few moments later (note: Delta Mae Biggs, along with a few “trusted” family members/Memphis mafia members, were entrusted with keeping “readily available “packets of medications” for Elvis at all times”.


9:30 am: Elvis, in his bedroom with Ginger Alden, informs Ginger that he still cannot sleep and tells her that he is going into his bathroom to read (note: there are disputes concerning which book Elvis takes with him and the dispute is between the books; “The Scientific Search for the Face of Jesus” and/or “The Prophet”. It is our belief that the most reliable source is that Elvis took “The Scientific Search for the Face of Jesus” and he left “The Prophet” on his bedside table”. While Elvis is heading towards his bathroom, book in hand, Ginger replies to Elvis “Don’t fall asleep in there”. Elvis’ response is “Okay, I won’t,” Sadly, these are the last words that Elvis ever said that was heard by anyone.


1:30 pm:Ginger awakes from her sleep and is surprised to find that Elvis is not asleep beside her (note: it was an “unwritten rule” that whoever went to bed with Elvis was entrusted with checking on him regularly. This was done because in addition to Elvis being a sleep walker he was also on medications that could “kick in”, all of a sudden, rendering Elvis unable to complete whatever it was that he was doing at the time such as eating, reading, etc. For Elvis to have been “unchecked” from approximately 9:30am until 1:30pm was HIGHLY UNUSUAL). She immediately goes to the bathroom door and knocks while saying “Elvis are you ok”. After getting no response she opens the bathroom door and discovers Elvis lying on the bathroom floor. Ginger immediately, and frantically, calls out (including using the intercom system and the telephone) for Elvis’ Associates (i.e. Al Strada and Joe Esposito). Al Strada, and Joe Esposito, arrive and try to move Elvis and check his vitals and they immediately call for an ambulance conveying that it is an “EMERGENCY involving Elvis Presley”.


2:04pm: The ambulance arrives at Graceland at which point the medics try to revive Elvis and check his vitals. Elvis is put onto a stretcher and placed into the ambulance and it is relayed to Baptist Memorial Hospital that Elvis is “unresponsive” and en route.


2:56 pm: Elvis Presley arrives via ambulance at Baptist Memorial Hospital and is taken into the Emergency Room where Doctors, and medical care providers, frantically try to revive Elvis. All attempts to revive Elvis are unsuccessful.


3:30 pm: The Physicians at Baptist Memorial Hospital officially pronounce that “Elvis Presley” is dead. The “official cause of death” is “cardiac arrhythmia” (note: the Coroners Autopsy notes reflect that Elvis may have suffered from heart disease and, in fact, Elvis heart was reported to have been “one and a half times the size of a normal mans heart with the same height/weight/age”. Elvis Presley’ Autopsy was completed at 7:00pm CST officially) which means “stopped heart”.


4:00 pm: Surrounded by a “sea of reporters” Vernon Presley informs the press that “My son is dead.”
 

              

From the last vacation circa 1977

From the last vacation circa 1977

The last vacation of Elvis Presley

Elvis playing football in Hawaii during his last vacation 1977

The last vacation of Elvis Presley

  

  • Elvis was exhausted, in declining health, and needed/wanted a vacation.

In usual Elvis fashion he would not commit to where he wanted to vacation at but tell everyone to "be prepared" and give the departure dates and times. He thought it was a pleasant surprise for everyone.

Preparation began in earnest about the middle of February. 

After months of false hints, Elvis finally announced that Hawaii was the chosen location. 

Members of the group were dispatched in advance to the islands, deciding to accommodate a party of approximately 38 people. Like everything involving Elvis planning, preparation, and coordination was essential...and demanded.

The departure date of 3rd March was set.

By 6.00 pm everyone had assembled at Graceland and timing coordinator, Dick Grob, passed the word to start loading the plane. Billy Smith who was overseeing Elvis' preparation, signaled that Elvis would be ready at 7.30am as planned. 

Those not personally accompanying Elvis to the plane left for the airport and boarded. 

Elvis came downstairs at Graceland, said goodbye to his grandmother, and left for the short ride to the airport,

Around 8.00pm the door to Elvis' Convair 880, the “Lisa Marie” was closed. 

The private plane taxied through the rain on the first leg of the first and last trip to Hawaii with Elvis

The “Lisa Marie” flew westward landing at Oakland International Airport in California. 

It was now close to Midnight, Memphis time. Fuel was added and two other passengers from Los Angeles Boarded. 

They had just arrived by a commercial flight, to connect with the Lisa Marie Plane. 

The additional passengers filled the plane to capacity of 29 people; in addition to the crew of 5. which was necessary for this flight.

Shortly before 1.00am Memphis time, the “Lisa Marie” was again airborne, westward over the Pacific Ocean. 

When it landed in Hawaii the plane was met by the four members of the advance party who had been alerted by phone.

The “Lisa Marie”, with Elvis and the group, arrived in Hawaii in the early morning hours of 4th March 1977.

Elvis left his plane and went directly to his suite on the 31st Floor, RAINBOW TOWERS, HILTON HAWAIIAN VILLAGE HOTEL which included a spectacular view.

The remaining group occupied 15 other rooms on the same floor with equally spectacular views.

After two days at the hotel, Elvis rented a Beach House in Kailua, Hawaii on the other side of the island of Oahu. 

Elvis lived in the house with his girlfriend & cousin Billy Smith, his personal security guard; Dick Grob, and four others. 

The remaining group travelled daily the route from the hotel, across the mountains through Pali Pass, to the Beach House.

Elvis spent the days on the Beaches of Kailus Bay or lying in the sun by the pool at the house on Kaapuni Drive. He took time out from the Beaches to go shopping at the Ala Mona Shopping Centre in Honolulu, and several stores in the town of Kailua.

Elvis also purchased clothing, sunglasses, and other items for himself and others in the group.

He also enjoyed a night of native dances and native food at the Polynesia Cultural Centre, 

at Brigham Young University Hawaii Campus, located near Laie, Hawaii

While staying at the Beach House, Elvis talked with everyone, watched television, listened to music and generally relaxed. 

He played ping pong with those staying at the Beach House and enjoyed barbecues at night. 

He also ate his regular diet of cheeseburgers, pizza, and bacon and eggs during the time he was in Kailua. 

On the Beach he relaxed enjoying conversation with his friends and played touch football with all the guys. 

This was a no-quarter game, full of the rough-house tactics and laughter, that Elvis loved so much. 

Several players including Elvis sustained minor injuries from running into fences, palm trees, and occasionally other players.

The pictures in The Last Vacation were taken on the vast white sand beaches of KAILUA BAY 

showing Elvis relaxed, content, and enjoying the companionship of his close friends. The laughter, recreation, and good times found on the Beaches carried over into the house.

Elvis got sand in his eye and cut the vacation short by wanting to get back to Memphis to have it checked out by his trusted Physicians so on the 13th of March, the entire party checked out of the hotel and departed Hawaii for the mainland.

Jerry Hopkins 2nd book had this Page of Info...

It was decided that Elvis and his party would leave from Oakland because it was two hundred miles closer to Honolulu than Los Angeles. He was taking the Lisa Marie and wanted every margin of safety in fuel loading. Not one to do anything by halves, however, Elvis took thirty-one others with him, and had Joe Esposito reserve more than a dozen rooms in the Hilton Rainbow Tower and rent a house on the beach.

The beach house, in Kailua, about half an hour's drive from Honolulu, was for Elvis and Ginger and her sisters, plus one bodyguard, the former Palm Springs policeman Dick Grob. The others stayed in the hotel and came over during the day or joined Elvis on his rare public forays. One evening, for instance, they were sneaked into the Polynesian Cultural Center to watch the Polynesian show. Other times, he took Ginger and her sisters and some of the others to one of the small shopping centers in Kailua, buying presents for everyone and, on one occasion, paying the bill for a stranger who was making a pur­chase for his wife.

Most of the ten days in Hawaii were spent close to home, sitting on the beach, playing Ping-Pong at the house, or touch football on the sand. Those who had been with Elvis for some time said later that his health improved during the vacation, said his color was better, his eyes brighter and clearer.

There was another observer who hadn't seen Elvis in some time, and he was shocked. This was Kalani Simerson, a onetime performer who operated a successful limousine service. He had known Elvis, and had worked for him, since the early 1960s, when Elvis made his first films in Hawaii. 

The last time he had seen Elvis was when he weighed a trim 170 or so for the satellite television show. As before, Kalani was again called to make some of the arrangements for Elvis's visit, and because of his long­standing friendship, he was invited to join Elvis on the beach socially.

"We played football," Kalani says, "and it was sad, very sad. Elvis was overweight and just unable to function normally. I guess it was all that medication they said he took. Somebody'd throws him the ball and he'd catch it and start running and he couldn't stop. He just couldn’t control his own body. One time he ran right into a cyclone fence and cut his hand."

On the fourteenth day, Elvis got some sand in his eyes and abruptly the vacation was ended. Five days after that he was back on tour again. 

ED PARKER in his 1978 BOOK (Inside Elvis). remembers all the following Details

It was January 1977; we were in Charlotte, North Carolina. Elvis had just completed a show and he looked haggard... spent. "I need a rest," he confessed.

"Aw, it's nothing a few weeks in Hawaii couldn't cure," I parried.

"Yeah, yeah, I've been thinking about that. And Ginger's never been there. It would be kind of nice if I could take her over there and show her the Islands."

That was the opening I had been looking for. I left It up to Elvis to bring up the subject of Ginger. But once the subject was raised I used every opportunity to remind her of the attractions the Islands had to offer. I mentioned that Ginger was my favorite flower and that it grew wild in the Islands, and that haunting fragrance was one of the memories that tourists took home with them. 

We talked about the beautiful white sand beaches, the lush flower Island, and the opportunities available to relax away from the tempo of mainland life. Elvis' casual desire for a trip to the Islands soon matured into a full-blown plan for departure. Ginger became excited as the possibility shifted toward becoming a reality.

In the latter part of February, I got a call from Charlie Hodge. "It looks like the boss has finally made up his mind, Ed. Then again, he may change it. But as it stands now, plan toward going to the Islands about the first of March. Elvis wants Lellanl to come. Can you make it?"

"We'll do it!" I said.

We met Elvis in Oakland, California, during the second week in March. He decided that Oakland should be the departure point because it is 2OO miles closer to Oahu than Los Angeles, that gave an extra margin of safety in fuel loading. Because of the extensive remodeling Elvis had done on the Lisa Marie, the guest list for this trip would be limited to 28 individuals (not including the 5 crew members). Elvis had invited with him on this escape trip those individuals he felt he could trust. They were a small nucleus of those whose love for Elvis had never wavered. They and their families were to be Elvis' guests for 10 days, at the Hilton Rainbow Towers in Honolulu.

This was an incredibly expensive trip. Fuel alone for the round trip was nearly 825.OOO. Elvis also leased a house on the opposite side of the Island. This became his retreat during the day. There he could relax and enjoy himself without the ever-present threat of hotel guests interrupting him. These were happy relaxing days for Elvis. He basked in the sun, played football, walked around in "grubbies" and sampled many island delicacies that he had never tasted before. 

There was no formality at our gatherings. 

We sat on the ground cross legged and ate native style with our fingers. Elvis sampled guava cake and haupia cake, a delicacy that is laced with fresh coconut. I offered to treat Elvis to poi, knowing what his reaction would be. I was right, he rolled his eyes and said, "No thanks, I'm not going to be putting up any wallpaper today!"

Elvis made periodic forays to the small shopping centers on the windward side of the Island. He wanted to take Ginger and her sisters, Tille and Rosemary, on a shopping spree. Elvis played Santa Claus, and he loved the role. 

While shopping he noticed a man buying items for his wife. Elvis waited until the man was about to pay his check, stepped in and insisted on buying it for him. The man was dumbfounded; he ran across the street, called his wife and told her what had happened. 

By the next day the story had gone all over the Islands. That was not what Elvis had intended. His sole purpose in shopping at this out of the way place was to retain some semblance of privacy and anonymity. His generous nature had gotten the best of him.

As the days progressed, I could see the color returning to Elvis' cheeks. 

His complexion had improved, and he had begun to regain some of his stamina.

ED PARKER in his 1978 BOOK. Remembers all the following Details. #Part 2. 

I finally had an opportunity to do something for my friend who had done so much for me. One of the key attractions on the Islands is the Polynesian Cultural Center. It's one of the few places in the world where the ancient island culture is retained. I suggested to Joe that this would be a unique opportunity for Elvis and the rest of his party. I wanted them to be my guests. The next day Elvis said that Joe had talked to him and that he was pleased with the suggestion. "This would be great for Ginger," Elvis said. "We haven't had a chance to go anywhere and see anything. 

Do they have all of the old island dances there, Ed?"

"They've got dances from all of the islands there, Elvis —Hawaiian, Samoan, Tahitian, Maori, dancers from New Zealand; but, Elvis, wait till you see the dancers from Tonga. They come out with spears and fans and they are all painted up. The gals will never forget it!"

"We're looking forward to it, Ed."

It took two days to work out the security details to enable Elvis and his party to enjoy themselves without being Imposed upon. The Polynesians at the Cultural Center were very coopera­tive. Elvis, the night of the performance, laughed and joked and thoroughly enjoyed himself. It pleased me to see my friend more relaxed than he had been for years. He was still not his former self, but there was a vast improvement. We arrived under cover of darkness. 

The show had already started. But there still amassed a body of fans waiting for Elvis on the outside. Word had gotten out, and they insisted on seeing the King. Unlike mainland fans, they admired him from a distance, respected his privacy, and let him enter the show unmolested. Elvis commented on this courtesy many times before his death.

The show was spectacular. Immediately before inter­mission a member of the staff leads us to a first aid room to await the second half of the show. 

We were served pineapple halves filled with ice cream. During the intermission, Elvis asked me about something he had seen that intrigued him.

"Ed, I saw this haole guy talking to a big Samoan dude and he spoke like a native. How come?"

"Elvis, that was one of the missionaries from our church. He served a two-year mission in Samoa. After they're there for a few months, they speak like natives."

"That's something else! Two years huh? Does it pay pretty good?"

I had to smile at that question, "They pay their own way, they receive absolutely no pay whatsoever while they're on their mission."

Well, how do they live?" Elvis asked.

"They either save the money before they go, or their family supports them during that period."

Elvis thought for a moment, "That's really something!"

The show resumed, and I watched my friend in the reflected glare of the fire dancers' torches. He was happy. He was at peace. And for the first time in many months he was thoroughly enjoying himself. For a change he was being entertained instead of entertaining others. Those special moments were soon but a memory. 

We returned to the mainland, and Elvis resumed his hectic pace.

The trip had been good for him. He slept better, he had more stamina, and I felt that his health had improved greatly.

LARRY GELLER chatting with ELVIS

4th MARCH 1977

Rainbow Towers Hawaiian Village Hotel, Honolulu

We're here at last on a vacation that was long overdue. 

Everyone is drained from the grueling effects of being on the road and the enormous pressures of working for Elvis under unforeseen, horren­dous conditions. 

The one-nighters; the debilitating winter cold; taking care of Elvis, an exhausting job unto itself—all have taken their toll. Everyone looks older than they are.

Elvis is a driven man and he needs this rest more than anyone else. 

He desperately requires more than a short vacation in Hawaii. Hopefully this will signal change, because his condition is getting worse, and this short surcease from agony is just the tonic—for the time being. "The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step."

I can see on everyone's face the relief of just being in this tropical paradise. 

The Rainbow Towers has a spectacular view from the thirty-first floor. Elvis spent most of the daylight hours on his balcony today with its panoramic view of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head. 

His suite was open to any of the entourage, and their wives and girlfriends, who cared to come in and visit with him.

He is so happy being here, pointing out the various points of interest to all from his balcony. Ginger has two sisters, Terry and Rosemary, with her, and Elvis is taking immense pride and joy in providing this trip for them.

Actually, there are thirty-eight of us: what a family Elvis has adopted.

Everyone is hopeful that Elvis will take full advantage of this golden opportunity to get outdoors, exercise and eat better, instead of his typical fried-food diet and stuffing himself with cheeseburgers and fried potatoes right before he goes to sleep. 

Health and nurturing are everywhere. The air is clean and aromatic, and the Hawaiian fragrance of pineapples and tropical flowers in this atmo­sphere has already enveloped all of us. 

It's so seductive.

5th MARCH 1977 part 2

Feeling fantastic in Hawaiian bliss, dressed loose and comfortably in my new Hawaiian floral shirt. As I entered Elvis' suite, he had just come out of his bedroom to have some breakfast. A few of the guys were hanging around on the balcony. As I approached Elvis, he smiled and greeted me with "Aloha, L.G."

"Aloha, E."

Some weeks ago, when I gave Elvis a complete kit of vitamins and minerals for his birthday, he took them for only two days. Now I felt this was an ideal opportunity to direct him toward a healthier regimen. I placed in front of him on, the coffee table a packet of vitamins and minerals I had prepared.

"Take this power pack, Elvis. It will pick you up and give you some natural energy. I put in some extra E and a potent combination of the B complex, vitamin C and some minerals. If you take these every day, they will help strengthen you. "

Elvis opened the vitamin pack and gulped them down with fresh orange juice. 

Then he looked over to me with a grin and said, "I want to get these down before Dr. Nick comes in. 

Remember last year when we were on tour and you came in with a load of vitamin pills like these for me? And Dr. Nick said, 'That crap doesn't work; he doesn't need those'? Well, you know, he's a doctor, and most of them are locked into the old traditional-medicine ways. of doing things, that's how they've been trained. I don't want to hear him bitch and complain again. Doctors think they know everything."

For the remainder of the day Elvis stayed in his suite relaxing, spending a lot of time sitting on the balcony, enjoying the view and this incredible tropical air wafting through the open balcony win­dows. 

The majority of the group spent the day on the beach in front of the Rainbow Towers, went shopping and then went out for dinner at the various restaurants that are part of the Hilton Hawaiian Village Hotel.

6th MARCH 1977 part 3

Elvis decided to rent a beach house in Kailua on Kaapuni Drive, on the other side of the island. 

This will provide the privacy he requires, so that he can lie in the sun by the pool or go down to the beach 

This afternoon we all played football together for the first time in well over a year. 

Elvis played so hard that Joe told him to go slowly, because he wasn't used to moving his body like that and it was dangerous for his heart. 

But there's no stopping Elvis once he has his mind set on something.

7th MARCH 1977 - OAHU part 4

Elvis was sore today due to yesterday's vigorous football clash. 

In fact, most of us feel the effects of roughhousing it yesterday. 

We all sat by the ocean most of the afternoon relaxing and joking with one another, and by the expressions on everyone's face it looks as though we died and went to heaven. 

I can't remember the last time Elvis was outdoors in the sunshine, playing and enjoying himself so much. It's like the old days. God willing, this will shake him out of his stupor.

Strangely, he won't expose his body. No matter how hot it is, he wears his athletic pants, a short-sleeve sweatshirt, a terrycloth hat with the brim turned down and his sunglasses. Is there some other reason than the beach being open to the public?

8th~9th MARCH 1977 Kailua Bay Part 5

Author/inventor Bernard Benson invited Charlie, Celest and me to his beach house a few miles from Elvis'. Bernard has arranged a special meeting for us with the leading Tibetan Buddhist master of the Hawaiian Island, Rimposhe, who escaped Chinese invasion of Tibet. We first met Bernard in Las Vegas last December, and he's been an avid Elvis fan ever since.

Rimposhe does not speak English, which, in the long run, doesn't matter. He is a small, radiant man. I could not take my eyes off him. He was clothed like a lama, wearing the traditional saffron robe. His face was a very fine Mongolian type, and beautifully formed: a high brow with piercing yet happy eyes, and his face lit up as if the energy of the sun was shining from it. He smiled a smile of one who knows.

We all sat together in Bernard's large living room overlooking the magnificent Kailua Bay. Everyone was silent for an hour or so. The meeting had a tremendous healing effect on me, and I realized that the silence and the electricity in the air were releasing layers of tension and frustrations that had gradually accumulated. I felt it slowly melting and dissolving as I sat with this mysterious, still, silent man. I saw him turn to his attendant devotee, a young Tibetan clad in an orange robe and with a shaved head. I saw his lips move but could not hear his softly whispered words.

The young monk said, "Master said, 'One can never "know" truth that is beyond the mind; the mind can only create an idea of truth, an image of truth. Truth is the creativeness behind all creation, yet that which is created is not truth. Only the uncreated is creative, and that is the truth. Therefore, discover in the silence of the mind the true unity in all things. Disregard personal separation. Live in the conscious realization of your oneness with the Creator of all mankind.' "

The young monk then said to me, "You should do a meditation, 'Om mani padme om.' "(Translated, it means "The jewel in the center of the lotus," a symbol of the divinity within the flesh.) 

10th MARCH 1977 Kailua Bay Part 6

Elvis' Beach House, Kailua Bay 

This afternoon Charlie and I related our experience at Bernard's to Elvis and asked if he wanted an audience with the Master. Elvis was hesitant.

"Not now, Charlie. I have a little trouble with that one. I don't need to meet any masters right now." 

"I'm on the right path." He waved a spiritual book he was holding and clutched the chai he was wearing around his neck. "I'm sure you had a pleasant experience and they're good people, but not now—maybe some other time."

11th MARCH 1977

Ed Parker, a strict Mormon who was raised in Hawaii, set up an evening for Elvis and the entire group to visit the Polynesian Cultural Center at the Hawaii campus of Brigham Young University. We all piled into a caravan of vehicles at about 8 p.m. and drove for about thirty minutes to the Center.

Through Ed's organizing with the campus and local security and Elvis' personal security staff, we were secretly ushered into the open-air pavilion, so that Elvis went unnoticed among the hundreds of tourists—until he reached his seat. 

Within moments his presence became known. News spread like wildfire, and most eyes were glued to our special section in the grandstands where Elvis was enjoying himself, instead of on the exciting show 13th MARCH 1977 Kailua Bay Part 7

Elvis decided it was time to leave paradise. The next tour begins on the twenty-third, and he wants to spend some time back home at Graceland. 

One by one, he presented everyone with a special gift. 

Afterward he said, "I gave everyone gifts so that they would have something to remember our trip to Hawaii and us all, happily, being together.

"This trip cost a good one hundred thousand, but money is not what matters. 

Before we left they even had me sign that "WILL". Y'know, just in case, flying over the ocean and all that. Only it's the times like this, sharing not the money, but the good times, that transcend money."

Back on the mainland, we all returned to our homes to prepare for the next tour, a nine-day swing through Middle America. Though everyone enjoyed the vacation, and Elvis did get to relax, it wasn't nearly enough. End 

Ginger Alden Interview about this vacation:

QUESTION: Can you tell us a little about THE LAST VACATION? Elvis seemed to be in excellent spirits, 

Resting and Sunbathing with you on the Beach and having a lot of fun.

GINGER: My time with Elvis was so special and the Hawaiian Vacation was a lot of fun.

Elvis knew I had never been to Hawaii and wanted to take my whole family but only my sisters could go at this time.

We left on my sister Terry's Birthday, the 3rd of March. He was in a great mood, despite the fact, he had mentioned that more of his group had asked to go along and he reluctantly let them.

My Sisters and I stayed with Elvis in the back of the Lisa Marie during the flight as he joked, laughed and sang.

The trip was so beautiful, but unfortunately cut short when Elvis irritated one of his eyes and we had to return to Memphis.

I felt he genuinely had a good time on this trip and it was so wonderful to see him relax, go out to a shopping mall and sing. I have never forgotten the thrill of that Vacation.

ROSEMARY: (Ginger's Sister) Yes, Elvis wanted to take our whole family, but they couldn't leave their jobs so Terry and myself went along with Ginger. We had a great time in Hawaii seeing Elvis relax and take in some sun. 

QUESTION: 

Rosemary, can you tell us about the Famous Photograph 

- when Elvis has dived on top of you ?

ROSEMARY:

Yes, I have taken a lot of ribbing over the years with that photo!

We were at a Vacation Home in Hawaii and a few of us were talking with Elvis.

I noticed that he kept cutting his eyes over in my direction when he suddenly got up,

started to walk past me then threw himself on top of me!

Elvis and I were laughing so hard and I just more or less spontaneously,

Threw my leg into the air and someone took the photo.

I still can't help but laugh every time I see that picture! 

QUESTION: 

Did you see any sign of Elvis' Drugs Problems......?

SHIRLEY: 

. Never .... I never saw it... as a matter of fact, I remember when we were there, he said, "Joe, why don't you order up some of those drinks with the Umbrellas in them?"

So, Joe ordered some Mai-tais, or whatever they were, and Elvis would sit there and take a little sip of it and you could tell he couldn't stand it, you know.

I've had people say to me that he drank a lot too.

I never saw him drink and I remember that Mai-tai thing, that's the only time I saw him drink alcohol and he'd drink it like I did, one sip at a time, not really enjoying it.

But it was a Fun Vacation, kind of neat because we ended up leaving the hotel and renting a House, so Elvis could go out more. 

He tried to be more active, he tried to play football with the guys.

SHIRLEY:

Now this is starting to sound like a Me, Me, Me Interview, but you know the photos taken in Hawaii? 

And Joe will attest to this to, I swear to god that it's true. Joe used to do a lot of photography, and we were on the beach and he was taking photos of me.

Elvis was sitting there with Ginger and Rosemary and Elvis would say

"Hey Joe, why don't you take a picture of Me and Shirley?"

ELVIS SANG "IN THE MISTY MOONLIGHT" TO JOES GIRLFRIEND (RARE FACT)

INTERVIEW with Shirley...

......In another he is singing "IN THE MISTY MOONLIGHT" 

Elvis was going to record that song for me. I used to say to him "You know Elvis, you would sing that song so well, that song was made for you" and he would say, "You know, give me the music on that, I might wanna do it."

Here's the funny thing about it; he told me that he was going to record it, and he told Charlie Hodge to get the music.

The night he passed away, the music was laying right next to his bed.

Some extra comments (various Sources)

ELVIS made plans during the stay to show Ginger the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial

Which was only cancelled at the last minute!

Everyone remarked on how relaxed Elvis seemed:

At times he appeared to enjoy Terry Alden's company almost as much as her sister's

Ginger got Elvis to play Ping-Pong with her ~ despite Elvis saying that he felt foolish,

swinging at a little ball that he could hardly ever keep on the table.

Joe is quoted as saying "The holiday was a painful exercise in Nostalgia"

Dr. Nick got concerned when Elvis got some sand in his eye!

and thought the Cornea might be scratched...

saying it might be better for Elvis to return to Graceland to recuperate!

With Characteristic generosity Elvis picked out a gift for each member of the party 

to serve as remembrance of the good times that they had had......

and promised GINGER that next time they would have the experience for themselves. 

ELVIS' LAST WILL was signed and witnessed... "3rd March 1977"

...Earlier in the same day... before they flew to HAWAII.

Other Hawaii Vacations/Trips by Elvis

Hilton Hawaiian Village Hotel - Waikiki Beach - Ohau

Ilikai Hotel (adjacent to the Hawaiian Village) - Waikiki Beach - Ohau

Coco Palms Resort (closed / devastated by Hurricane Iniki) Wailua - Kauai

1957: Hawaiian Village Hotel: Honolulu / Shofield Baracks concert

1961: Hawaiian Village Hotel: Bloch Arena concert / 

1961: (continues from Concert...) Blue Hawaii (+ movie scene) / Coco Palms Resort (movie finale)

1962: Hawaiian Village Hotel: Girls, Girls, Girls

1965: Ilikai Hotel: Paradise Hawaiian Style

1968: Ilikai Hotel: Vacation (May)

1969: Ilikai Hotel / Coco Palms Resort: Vacation (May)

1969: Hawaiian Village Hotel: vacation (Oct)

1972: Hawaiian Village Hotel: November Concert / press conference

1973: Hawaiian Village Hotel: Aloha from Hawaii (January arrival / rehearsals)

1977: Hawaiian Village Hotel: Vacation arrival / - entourage stayed at the Rainbow Tower

(Elvis and selected friends moved to his rented Kailua beach house afterwards)

Elvis Offstage

Charitable Acts of Elvis Presley

  

The 1970s were a decade of change for Elvis.


He had made a successful transition out of the movie contracts into live performing. He was married and was blessed with a daughter…Lisa Marie.

He had ruled Las Vegas and all of his concert 


Elvis & St Jude’s and other charities

Out of the many charities Elvis supported one of his favorite charities was St. Jude’s Hospital for children in Memphis. Beginning in June 1957 Elvis appeared with Danny Thomas on stage promoted as the “Shower of Stars”. This concert was at Russwood Park in Memphis. 


In 1964 Elvis purchased a yacht named “the Potomac, whose previous owner was the United States President Franklin Roosevelt. The event raised (approximately) $55,000 and the yacht was scheduled to be sold via auction with the proceeds going to St. Jude’s Hospital.


Elvis Deserves More Recognition
For His Many Charitable Acts

Throughout most of his career, Elvis generously gave of his time, talent, and money to support various charitable causes. His generosity in this area has been noted by his biographers, but not given the level of recognition it deserves. Let’s try, then, as well as can be done in this limited space, to highlight and celebrate how Elvis shared the bounty of his life with those far less fortunate.

Elvis felt especially charitable during the Christmas season. It started as early as December 1957, when he donated $1,050 so that all students at his alma mater, Humes High School, could attend the annual E. H. Crump Memorial Football Game for the Blind in Memphis.


(Left: U.S.S. Arizona Benefit Show, Bloch Arena, Honolulu, March 25, 1961)

After Elvis returned home from the army, he started an annual holiday season custom of contributing funds to Memphis charities. In November 1962, Elvis presented Memphis Mayor Loeb with a $50,000 donation to a combination of Memphis charities. A few days before Christmas in 1963, Elvis was back in the mayor’s office, this time handing over a check for $55,000 to be distributed among 58 local charities. Elvis donated similar amounts to Memphis charities at year’s end in both 1964 and 1965. By 1966, his generosity to the needy in his hometown had doubled to over $100,00. The following religious season, Elvis pledged $10,500 to the Memphis Jewish Community Center Building Fund.


In recognition of Elvis’s many charitable contributions to the city, both Memphis Mayor William Ingram and Tennessee Governor Buford Ellington declared October 29, 1967, “Elvis Presley Day” in the city and state.

• Elvis stood up in the fight against polio

Early in his career, Elvis came forward to support the March of Dimes, a foundation seeking to find a cure for children’s polio. In this cause, Elvis gave his time and image to encourage the public to support the charity. On October 28, 1956, before appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show that evening, Elvis was inoculated with the new Salk polio vaccine and recorded a public service announcement for the March of Dimes. In January 1958, Elvis posed for photographs at Graceland with March of Dimes poster girl, eight-year-old Mary Kosloski, and while in the army in January 1959 he again appeared in publicity shots with that year’s March of Dimes poster child. Later that year, Elvis continued his support of the organization by publicly receiving a polio booster shot.

Undoubtedly the most publicized of Elvis’s charitable efforts were the benefit concerts he performed throughout his career. His first such show came on July 4, 1956, at Memphis’s Russwood Park. Over 14,000 tickets were sold, with all proceeds going to The Cynthia Milk Fund and the Variety Club’s Home for Convalescent Children. Elvis’s next benefit concert was in Tupelo, Mississippi, on September 27, 1957. After expenses, all proceeds, which amounted to over $14,000, went toward the construction of a youth center in Tupelo.

• Benefit show for USS Arizona Memorial most remembered

After leaving the army in 1960, Elvis performed live on stage just three times before settling into a Hollywood career through the sixties. All three shows were benefit concerts. The first two concerts were part of a Memphis charity event at Ellis Auditorium on February 25, 1961. Elvis’s afternoon and evening shows brought in a total of $51,612, of which $47,823 was divided among 26 Memphis charities. The remaining $3,789 was set aside for the Elvis Presley Youth Center in Tupelo. A month later, probably Elvis’s most well-known benefit concert was held in Hawaii to raise funds for the USS Arizona Memorial. The show at Honolulu’s Bloch Arena netted $62,000 for the monument in Pearl Harbor. (While in Hawaii in 1965 on location for Paradise, Hawaiian Style, Elvis and Colonel Parker visited the completed memorial to lay a bell-shaped wreath in honor of the servicemen killed aboard the Arizona.)

There were two more benefit shows during Presley’s concert years in the seventies. Elvis’s 1973 worldwide satellite concert at Honolulu’s International Convention Center on January 13-14 benefited the Kui Lee Cancer Fund. No admission was charged but those attending donated over $75,000 to the cancer fund. Finally, on May 5, 1975, Elvis gave a charity concert in Jackson, Mississippi, to benefit victims of a McComb, Mississippi, tornado. After the concert, Elvis presented a check for more than $100,000 to Governor Bill Waller.

• Elvis responsible for many other random acts of kindness

One of Elvis’s favorite charities was St. Jude’s Hospital for children in Memphis. In June 1957, Elvis appeared on stage with hospital benefactor Danny Thomas at the “Shower of Stars” benefit show at Russwood Park in Memphis. Then, in 1964 Elvis purchased Franklin Roosevelt’s yacht, the Potomac, for $55,000 and presented it to Danny Thomas to be auctioned off, with benefits going to St. Jude’s Hospital.

Scattered throughout Elvis’s career were many other charitable acts, which received little, if any, press coverage at the time. On November 5, 1956, Elvis made a non-performance appearance in Memphis supporting a new driver-education program, and on September 20, 1957, he appeared on Memphis TV to support the same cause. On December 12, 1956, Elvis donated toys to a Marine Corps drive for underprivileged children. The following April he was the first contributor to “Coffee Day for Crippled Children,” a Memphis charity. While in the army in January 1959, Elvis joined fellow soldiers in donating blood to the German Red Cross. In 1965 Frank Sinatra and Barbara Stanwyck thanked Elvis in a special ceremony for his $50,000 donation to the “Motion Picture Relief Fund,” and in 1970 Elvis contributed $7,000 to the Los Angeles Police community relations program. And in May 1971, Elvis gave flowers for Mother's Day to all female employees at the International Hotel in Las Vegas.

Finally, Elvis twice made unusual contributions to the Memphis Zoo. In June 1957 he shipped to the zoo a wallaby he had received as a gift from Australia. Five years later Presley fans in Australia sent him another wallaby, which he also gifted to the Memphis Zoo.

• We’ll never know about all of Elvis’s charitable acts

The charitable acts listed above are just those noted in Ernst Jorgensen and Peter Guralnick’s book, Elvis: Day by Day. Undoubtedly, during his lifetime Elvis was responsible for many other acts of charity that went unreported and will remain unknown. Elvis fans can be justly proud that their favorite entertainer often shared the good fortune of his life with the less fortunate. It was only natural that he had the compassion to do so, since he was raised in a family that needed a helping hand occasionally. 

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"Early in his career, Elvis came forward to support the March of Dimes, a foundation seeking to find a cure for children’s polio."

Elvis Deserves More Recognition

For His Many Charitable Acts

Throughout most of his career, Elvis generously gave of his time, talent, and money to support various charitable causes. His generosity in this area has been noted by his biographers, but not given the level of recognition it deserves. Let’s try, then, as well as can be done in this limited space, to highlight and celebrate how Elvis shared the bounty of his life with those far less fortunate.

Elvis felt especially charitable during the Christmas season. It started as early as December 1957, when he donated $1,050 so that all students at his alma mater, Humes High School, could attend the annual E. H. Crump Memorial Football Game for the Blind in Memphis.

(Left: U.S.S. Arizona Benefit Show, Bloch Arena, Honolulu, March 25, 1961)

After Elvis returned home from the army, he started an annual holiday season custom of contributing funds to Memphis charities. In November 1962, Elvis presented Memphis Mayor Loeb with a $50,000 donation to a combination of Memphis charities. A few days before Christmas in 1963, Elvis was back in the mayor’s office, this time handing over a check for $55,000 to be distributed among 58 local charities. Elvis donated similar amounts to Memphis charities at year’s end in both 1964 and 1965. By 1966, his generosity to the needy in his hometown had doubled to over $100,00. The following religious season, Elvis pledged $10,500 to the Memphis Jewish Community Center Building Fund.

In recognition of Elvis’s many charitable contributions to the city, both Memphis Mayor William Ingram and Tennessee Governor Buford Ellington declared October 29, 1967, “Elvis Presley Day” in the city and state.

• Elvis stood up in the fight against polio

Early in his career, Elvis came forward to support the March of Dimes, a foundation seeking to find a cure for children’s polio. In this cause, Elvis gave his time and image to encourage the public to support the charity. On October 28, 1956, before appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show that evening, Elvis was inoculated with the new Salk polio vaccine and recorded a public service announcement for the March of Dimes. In January 1958, Elvis posed for photographs at Graceland with March of Dimes poster girl, eight-year-old Mary Kosloski, and while in the army in January 1959 he again appeared in publicity shots with that year’s March of Dimes poster child. Later that year, Elvis continued his support of the organization by publicly receiving a polio booster shot.

Undoubtedly the most publicized of Elvis’s charitable efforts were the benefit concerts he performed throughout his career. His first such show came on July 4, 1956, at Memphis’s Russwood Park. Over 14,000 tickets were sold, with all proceeds going to The Cynthia Milk Fund and the Variety Club’s Home for Convalescent Children. Elvis’s next benefit concert was in Tupelo, Mississippi, on September 27, 1957. After expenses, all proceeds, which amounted to over $14,000, went toward the construction of a youth center in Tupelo.

• Benefit show for USS Arizona Memorial most remembered

After leaving the army in 1960, Elvis performed live on stage just three times before settling into a Hollywood career through the sixties. All three shows were benefit concerts. The first two concerts were part of a Memphis charity event at Ellis Auditorium on February 25, 1961. Elvis’s afternoon and evening shows brought in a total of $51,612, of which $47,823 was divided among 26 Memphis charities. The remaining $3,789 was set aside for the Elvis Presley Youth Center in Tupelo. A month later, probably Elvis’s most well-known benefit concert was held in Hawaii to raise funds for the USS Arizona Memorial. The show at Honolulu’s Bloch Arena netted $62,000 for the monument in Pearl Harbor. (While in Hawaii in 1965 on location for Paradise, Hawaiian Style, Elvis and Colonel Parker visited the completed memorial to lay a bell-shaped wreath in honor of the servicemen killed aboard the Arizona.)

There were two more benefit shows during Presley’s concert years in the seventies. Elvis’s 1973 worldwide satellite concert at Honolulu’s International Convention Center on January 13-14 benefited the Kui Lee Cancer Fund. No admission was charged but those attending donated over $75,000 to the cancer fund. Finally, on May 5, 1975, Elvis gave a charity concert in Jackson, Mississippi, to benefit victims of a McComb, Mississippi, tornado. After the concert, Elvis presented a check for more than $100,000 to Governor Bill Waller.

• Elvis responsible for many other random acts of kindness

One of Elvis’s favorite charities was St. Jude’s Hospital for children in Memphis. In June 1957, Elvis appeared on stage with hospital benefactor Danny Thomas at the “Shower of Stars” benefit show at Russwood Park in Memphis. Then, in 1964 Elvis purchased Franklin Roosevelt’s yacht, the Potomac, for $55,000 and presented it to Danny Thomas to be auctioned off, with benefits going to St. Jude’s Hospital.

Scattered throughout Elvis’s career were many other charitable acts, which received little, if any, press coverage at the time. On November 5, 1956, Elvis made a non-performance appearance in Memphis supporting a new driver-education program, and on September 20, 1957, he appeared on Memphis TV to support the same cause. On December 12, 1956, Elvis donated toys to a Marine Corps drive for underprivileged children. The following April he was the first contributor to “Coffee Day for Crippled Children,” a Memphis charity. While in the army in January 1959, Elvis joined fellow soldiers in donating blood to the German Red Cross. In 1965 Frank Sinatra and Barbara Stanwyck thanked Elvis in a special ceremony for his $50,000 donation to the “Motion Picture Relief Fund,” and in 1970 Elvis contributed $7,000 to the Los Angeles Police community relations program. And in May 1971, Elvis gave flowers for Mother's Day to all female employees at the International Hotel in Las Vegas.

Finally, Elvis twice made unusual contributions to the Memphis Zoo. In June 1957 he shipped to the zoo a wallaby he had received as a gift from Australia. Five years later Presley fans in Australia sent him another wallaby, which he also gifted to the Memphis Zoo.

• We’ll never know about all of Elvis’s charitable actsal

appearances were sold out and he was the highest paid entertainer in history (at that time).

Going into the 70’s Elvis was fit, happy, and optimistic, vocally in great shape, energized, passionate, and confident. 

Within a few years, after the start of the 70’s, Elvis life would turn…upside down.

His marriage would fail – he would file for divorce – his health deteriorated – and his monetary pressures increased. 

The story of Elvis’ life in the 1970’s, as was the case throughout his life, cannot be fully discerned in only one website and/or online series of posts. However, we will be adding new content to this page and make it a cornerstone of our site so please check back often.

In reflection here are some of Elvis’ inner most thoughts, and questions, many of which Elvis was never able to answer in his lifetime.

Elvis Aron Presley, or as he preferred to use his middle name later on in his life of "Elvis Aaron Presley", remains the Greatest Entertainer who ever...lived. 

Elvis always said "if you cut me I'll bleed". Elvis always questioned "Why"? And "why did God choose me"? 

Elvis left many unanswered questions and though he was blessed with many talents he also suffered in every conceivable manner (i.e. the guilt of his twin dying at birth, growing up dirt poor, his Mother’s death on 8/14/1958, being drafted into the US Army at the height of his fame, wasting many of his best years in "less than great" movie rolls, getting divorced from his wife, being a Father to a child he never got to see every day yet loved her with every breath he took, monetary issues due in part to Colonel Parkers' inequity in giving Elvis his share of revenue(s) along with not maximizing his own tax write off options, touring from 1969 - 1977, his health issues, his depression, his inability to find a "permanent soul mate", his insomnia and sleep apnea, the betrayal he felt concerning "Elvis What Happened", his CBS taping of Elvis in Concert in 1977 knowing he was bloated and in bad health, investigations into the sale of his plane, etc. etc.). 

Elvis will forever be missed and yet loved and his name never forgotten by those who saw him in person and generations to come who will listen to his songs, wonder if he "really ever existed", and respect and appreciate his body of work that encompassed three decades. 

THANK YOU for visitinollector.info and may God bless you in all of your endeavors. 

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