Ever The King
He came into the world on January 8, 1935 and left it on August 16,1977. In between those dates he catapulted to fame as a young man and was crowned King of Rock and Roll by millions of fans. This title was eventually shortened to The King.
Elvis, though, was too full of humility to ever consider himself a king. His mother was his guiding light and very strict about manners. As much as she must have believed that he had a powerful voice and could rise to the top in the music world, she didn't imagine that the family would ever be invited to become members of the Tupelo Country Club. He was kind to his parents, bought them their first house. He brought his friends with him everywhere including his stage. He was generous to everyone.
Elvis was drafted into the army on December 27, 1957, at the height of his popularity. Two years later he was released. While he was stationed in Germany, two eventful things happened. First his Mother Gladys died of a heart attack. It's been reported that Elvis never recovered from the shock of her early death. Secondly, he met his future wife in Germany, Priscilla, who was just 14 at their meeting. Elvis promised her parents that she would continue her schooling if they would allow him to take her home with him to Graceland. Her step-father, an Air Force Officer, and her mother, agreed. Elvis married Priscilla after her graduation from high school A daughter, Lisa Marie, was born to the couple in February, 1968.
Elvis on Tour
Elvis returned to his career in music after his discharge from the US Army. His popularity went so viral that it interfered with his desire for normal living. One of his favorite things to do when in Memphis was to go with his friends and his wife to a theater late at night to see movies. Or he would play piano in his home while his friends would sing. He also bought horses for men and wives of his entourage.
Elvis and Rising Sun
Elvis bought a black quarter horse called Domino for Priscilla, then decided to get himself a Golden Palomino. It took a lot of searching, but he finally found the one he named Rising Sun.
He bought horses for those closest to him, and they would ride together. It's been said that being with his horses made him truly happy. As his fame grew, though, he was resigned to ride in the wee hours of the morning, so he could be alone.
Elvis fell in love with Graceland the moment he saw the beautiful, stately colonial that was home to him until the end of his life at 42. There has been much, too much written about the sad ending of his life. I spoke to people who saw him perform. There was, all agreed, an electricity that enveloped him and spread out to every venue that hosted his appearances. I own a tape of his live "Aloha From Hawaii" show. From the tape, you have a sense of his prowess. He appeared larger than life and seemed to emit an indestructible energy. Yet much has been written of the sense of loss that was his when told of his identical twin brother, Jesse Garon who was stillborn.
Some years ago, I went to an Alexander the Great travelling display. There was a sculptured bust of Alexander, King of Ancient Macedon, I studied a moment or two then got chills. The face was an unmistakable likeness of Elvis's features. It was one of those moments of the eternal; mysterious yet true. So many similarities raced through my mind as I stared. Elvis was called "The King." He lived in Memphis, Tennessee. Alexander was 20 when he became king after his father was assassinated. A consummate beloved leader and warrior, by the age of 30, he had created the largest Empire in the ancient world. In Memphis, Egypt, he was lauded by the priests as pharaoh and considered a god.
Both men, born centuries apart. attained world fame early in their lives, were revered by the world, both were very religious. Each died early, Elvis at 42, Alexander at 33.