Elvis Presley: Fans gather at Graceland for funeral in 1977
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Elvis became the biggest star in the world in the 1950s, and continued topping charts and making movies into the 1960s. His voice and image remain as instantly recognisable now as then. The anniversary of his death on August 16, 1977, aged just 42, is marked every year by fans at a series of events at Graceland. There has only ever been one King. Elvis would never know that his greatest fear, which tormented while he was alive, would never come to pass.
Elvis was so charming and charismatic in public, few ever realised his inner struggles. Priscilla later said: “He didn’t express a whole lot. He didn’t wanna show you how insecure he was.”
In his final months, though, his fears were growing. He told his backing singer and short-lived girlfriend, Kathy Westmoreland, that he had “never done anything lasting.”
Priscilla added: “I remember Elvis saying that he didn’t really know if he gave up singing, if he did want to retire, he felt that people would forget him.”
What was so extraordinary was, at the time, most people would have agreed with him.
READ MORE: Elvis: The King’s father said ‘Everybody rejected him at the start but he refused to change’
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