The King's Decline - November 1972, Elvis invited Linda Diane Thompson
(runner-up Miss Tennessee) to move into Graceland. Almost immediately Linda began to
redecorate the mansion. The legacy of her efforts can still be seen in the
where Elvis later recorded ‘From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis Tennessee ”
because he was too lazy to travel to the Nashville studio. October
1973 Linda Thompson spent 2 week with Elvis at Baptist Memorial Hospital
while he recuperated from pneumonia.
Christmas that year Elvis gave Linda expensive jewelry which led
over a millions dollars worth by the end of their courtship. By November
Linda and Elvis relationship was folding, when she left Las Vegas
only after two nights. They finally broke up in 1976 because of
Elvis drug problems Linda claiming to the press, “It was a nice abnormal
life we had together.” Linda reappeared to attend Vernon Presley’s
funeral who died (of a broken heart) June 26, 1979
During the early 70s Elvis continued to tour, but soon fell victim to the same artistic atophy
that had bedevilled his celluloid career. Rather than re-enter the studio to record
fresh material he relied on a slew of patchy live albums that saturated the marketplace.
What had been innovative & exciting in 1969 swiftly became a tedious routine and an exercise in misdirected potential. The
backdrop to Elvis's final years was a sordid slump into drug dependency, reinforced by the pervasive
unreality of a pampered lifestyle in his fantasy home Graceland The dissolution of his marriage in
1973 coincided with a further decline and an alarming tendency to put on weight. Remarkably,
he continued to undertake live appearances, covering up his overweight frame with brightly
colored jump suits and enormous, ostentatiously jewelled belt.
August 1 - The book "Elvis - What
happened ?" released August 12 - The Space Shuttle Enterprise makes it's first
successful solo flight August 15 - The album "Moody Blue" released
August 16 -
Shortly after midnight Elvis returns to Graceland
from a late-night visit to the
dentist. Through the early morning of the 16th he takes care of last minute tour
details and relaxes with family and staff. He is to fly to Portland, Maine that night and do
a show there on the 17th, then continue the scheduled tour. He retires to his master suite
at Graceland around 7:00 AM to rest for his evening flight. By late morning, Elvis Presley is
dead. In a matter of hours the shock registers around the world. The official cause
of death was a heart attack. In the weeks following his demise, his record sales rocketed
Down to number one.
"A Memphis Fire Department ambulance from Engine House
29 at 2147 Elvis Presley Boulevard responded to the call at 2:33 pm and
by 2:56 pm had taken Presley to the emergency room at Baptist Hospital,
seven miles away from his Whitehaven home" "It was just a
routine call. Someone was having difficulty breathing at 3764 Elvis
Presley Boulevard. Such calls had come in before when people had
collapsed on the street as they waited to catch a glimpse of their singing
idol. The call was received by the normal procedure, said Charlie
Crosby, an emergency medical technician. We only knew it was his house."
- The Commercial Appeal
Indianapolis, Indiana’s Market Square Arena. This
will turn out to be Elvis' very last concert performance. (Torn down in 2004) Elvis
tours in concert. Shows on June 19, 20, & 21 were recorded by RCA for an
upcoming live album and videotaped for an upcoming CBS-TV television special. (Footage
from the show on the 20th is not used in the special.) Called Elvis in Concert.
It first aired on October 3 after Elvis’ death in August.
Take a Tour of Graceland