Priscilla Presley Once Revealed Elvis Would Often Check Himself Into the Hospital to ‘Get Away’ From the ‘Demands’ of Fame

Elvis Presley quickly earned the nickname “King of Rock and Roll.” He became popular in the 1950s, and his career spanned several decades before his death in 1973. But while he was famous, he had his advantages. And his ex-wife, Priscilla Presley, once revealed that the King would sometimes examine himself into the hospital just to get rid of the nostalgia of his career.

Elvis and Priscilla Presley
Elvis and Priscilla Presley Magma / WireImage Group

Elvis Presley’s career began in the early 20s

Elvis was born in a small town in Mississippi, but knew from an early age that he wanted to be a star. However, a music course did not happen overnight. Elvis reportedly walked into Sun Records back in 1953 with the hopes of paying for a few minutes of record time – and the ulterior motive for being discovered. It worked, and eventually Elvis caught the attention of other music officers. However, the songs he recorded were not going anywhere.

Elvis finally caught his big break when his song was played on Memphis radio station. From there, listeners loved his sound and wanted more. By the late 1950s, Elvis was a star. He recorded tours such as “Jailhouse Rock” and “All Shook Up.” In 1958, Elvis was drafted into the army, and his life changed.

Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley | Bettmann / Fios

Priscilla once said that his reputation got the best of him

Elvis and Priscilla met while stationed in Germany serving time in the army. Priscilla’s father was also based there, and the two met at a party. At the time, Priscilla was only 14 – 10 years younger than King. But he was fascinated by it, and even after leaving the army to continue his musical career, he wrote to Priscilla.

Priscilla eventually moved in with Elvis, and the two were dating for seven years before they married. Elvis’ career was at the height of her marriage, however, and her infidelity became too much for her to handle. However, she knew him as no one else and knew that fame would get the best of him.

In an interview in 2018, Priscilla told Sunday News that Elvis did what he could to try to overcome the reputation. He would engage in drugs, and the nostalgia would sometimes take so much away that he would voluntarily check into the hospital just to get some rest and silence.

“He would sometimes examine himself into the hospital because he wanted to get away from everyone,” Priscilla said. “He didn’t want the requests, he didn’t want the phone calls.”

Priscilla thought Elvis’ death was originally a ‘joke’

When Elvis died, Priscilla thought it was “one of those times” when he examined himself into the hospital as an escapee. But Elvis apparently died of a heart attack resulting from drug use. “It can’t be, it can’t be… This is a joke, it can’t be,” Priscilla recalled her own response. “It was terrible.”

Priscilla eventually got the idea to turn Elvis’ estate, Graceland, into a tourist destination. Today, people come to Graceland every year to honor the King and pay tribute to his musical success.

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