|Posted by Mickey Moran on February 24, 2013 at 10:35 PM|
Wow! I had to comment on this...my cousin does not look like this, and he still has all his hair. He has no facial alterations either-just a beard. His hair is white, but he doesnt look his age. He walks among us as a normal citizen-and has for 33 years. His voice is still as beautiful as ever. And I would like to say here-we need to leave the man alone. Let him live his life in peace.
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 30, 2012 at 8:45 AM|
The myth of Elvis Presley looms large in popular culture. Not only did he play a key role in the birth of rock ’n’ roll music—thereby forever changing the course of American history—Tupelo’s most famous son became the embodiment of everything both glorious and tragic about stardom in the late 20th century. If the years since Presley’s passing have taught us anything, it’s that his legacy has only grown. He may have been massively, unprecedentedly popular before, but it was only in death that he could truly become a symbol, an icon to be worshipped and desecrated in equal measure.
Nothing quite offers a testament to Presley’s iconic status like the proliferation of impersonators who’ve flourished in the years since The King’s death. No other performer has inspired this kind of tribute, or at least to such an enormous degree.
Looking at these impersonators, we might find that Presley’s own tragic story is repeated in miniature, dozens of times over. At least in the case of one such artist—who perhaps ironically insisted he wasn’t imitating Elvis—the story is arguably even more tragic and without a doubt far stranger. It’s a tale not just about the American fixation with celebrity, but about the ways in which the myth of stardom can go awry and shoot off in the oddest of trajectories, leaving in its wake a breakable, mortal human like any other.
The story of the singer Orion began as fiction and grew into a fanciful real-life tale that wound up trapping a desperate performer behind a mask he never wanted to put on. Unavoidably, the story was also about Elvis Presley—about the uncanny resemblance between an unknown singer’s voice and the voice of an American legend.
In a town steeped in strange success stories, hidden agendas, and dashed dreams, Orion’s tale is one of the most curious ever to originate in Music City USA—which is saying something. In its way, the story underscores some of the dark, disturbing aspects of image-making, music marketing, and how the music industry builds stars but destroys individuals.
If you’ve ever set foot inside a used record store and flipped through the country bins, you’ve seen them—countless albums, all emblazoned with the same masked man on the cover. The clothes are always some variation on tacky ’70s stagewear, but that sequined mask is always there, without fail, revealing only a rounded chin below and a full, black head of hair up top. After seeing a dozen variations on the same image, you can’t help but ask: “Who is this guy, what the hell is his story, and who does he think he’s kidding?” That man was Orion, and in his day, he and his producer, Shelby Singleton, apparently fooled more than a few people.
In a sense, there really were two Orions: There was Jimmy Ellis, the man behind the mask, and there was the fictional persona he perhaps all too willingly assumed. This latter Orion was born in the mind of a Georgia-based writer, Gail Brewer-Giorgio, who in the early ’70s concocted a novel about a charismatic rock ’n’ roll singer, Orion Eckley Darnell. Known to millions by his unusual first name, the fictional Orion was a poor, handsome young man from the Deep South who became the most famous performer of his time; the enormity of his popularity led him to be dubbed “The King.”
The parallels in the story are obvious enough. As time passes, this shy, sensitive superstar begins to view his fame as a trap and a curse. Unable to buy groceries or fill a tank with gas without drawing a mob, he’s forced to live in seclusion. His body bloated from drugs and a bad diet, he sinks into a deep, miserable depression.
But, this being fiction, the man devises a fantastical escape from his living hell. With the help of his sympathetic father, he creates a wax figure of his own overweight image. Then he grows a beard, loses weight, and fakes his own death in the mansion that has become his prison. After attending his own funeral, he drives off into the sunset in a beat-up station wagon with luggage strapped to the roof. As he motors down the road, the first tribute song to the life and death of Orion blasts from his radio.
Brewer-Giorgio wrote Orion: The Living Superstar of Song prior to Elvis Presley’s death on Aug. 16, 1977. But she didn’t get it published until afterward. By then, she’d already gained a fan in Nashville-based record producer and music mogul Shelby Singleton, who had purchased the rights to the Sun Records catalog from famed record producer Sam Phillips in 1969 and relocated the company from Memphis to Nashville. Since Elvis had first come to fame on Sun, Singleton had a heightened interest in anything to do with Presley’s legacy.
It was in the early ’70s that Singleton first crossed paths with Jimmy Ellis, the man who would become Orion incarnate. Born in 1945 in Orrville, Ala., Ellis had been recording songs and yearning for a big break since 1964, when he first began issuing dramatic ballads and traditional rockabilly songs on the Dradco label. By the time he encountered Singleton, he’d spent nearly a decade pursuing a career as a romantic Southern crooner and hip-shaking rocker. But he’d found little success, partly because deejays and record executives said he sounded too much like a second-rate Elvis.
Then, in 1972, a Florida record producer named Finlay Duncan sent Singleton a two-song single that Ellis had recorded in Fort Walton, Fla. When Singleton heard the song, he thought, “Man, either that is Elvis Presley singing, or it’s someone who sounds just like him.”
Once Duncan convinced Singleton that the singer indeed was Ellis rather than Elvis, the Nashville owner of Sun requested that the producer cut a couple more songs on the performer. Singleton made specific requests: “That’s Alright Mama” and “Blue Moon of Kentucky,” the two songs that launched Presley’s career on Sun Records in 1954. “I told them to try to duplicate the Elvis records as close as possible,” Singleton recalls. “And that’s what they did.”
Singleton had a plan. “I put the record out on Sun Records without a name on it,” the record company owner recalls, a devilish twinkle in his eye. “Everybody came back and swore that I had some long lost Elvis tracks, that I found them in the Sun vaults and rereleased them.”
After Singleton had bought Sun Records several years before, he made several moves that drew the ire of RCA Records, the company that bought the rights to Elvis Presley’s music from Sam Phillips in 1955 for $35,000. RCA pressed several lawsuits against Singleton, most of them involving the Sun label’s reissuing of early Presley songs and the release of the “Million Dollar Quartet” album, which featured old, previously unreleased studio tapes of Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash.
When RCA heard the Jimmy Ellis recordings, it too thought Singleton had dug up more lost Elvis tapes. “RCA came very close to suing me over the record,” Singleton says. “I kept telling them it wasn’t Elvis, but they didn’t believe me, and they thought I kept a name off the single because it was Elvis.... So they ran a voice print on it. That’s when they found out it really wasn’t Elvis.”
A few years after the release of the single, which encountered some success thanks to rural radio play in the South, Ellis got involved with another record man, Bobby Smith of Macon, Ga. The two collaborated on a couple of singles and an album, Ellis Sings Elvis, that traded off on the singer’s uncanny vocal resemblance to the most famous rocker in the world.
The album was created before Presley’s death. But as Ellis and Smith were preparing to put the album out, Presley passed away at his Graceland mansion. Overnight, of course, the star evolved from a pitiable shadow figure of a once-great artist into the overwhelmingly revered Dead Elvis. Interest in all things Elvis immediately heightened. Smith rushed the Ellis Sings Elvis album onto the market, at the same time contacting Singleton to ask if Sun might want to get involved.
A maverick from the start, the Texas-born Shelby Singleton was among the wave of music executives who came to prominence in the ’60s—unlike Owen Bradley, Chet Atkins, Fred Rose, and other founders of Music Row, he came from the business side rather than the musical side of the industry. He gained his reputation as a free-thinking promoter who often stepped outside of normal business practices.
A former U.S. Marine, he entered the music business in the late 1950s as a regional promoter for Mercury Records. His knack for creative ideas moved him quickly through the Mercury system. By 1960, he was based in New York, eventually becoming vice president of Mercury and then the top executive of subsidiary Smash Records. During his tenure at Mercury, he produced both pop and country acts, most of them Southern-based. His early successes included Brook Benton’s “The Boll Weevil Song” and Lee Roy Van Dyke’s “Walk On By” in 1961, and Bruce Chanel’s “Hey Baby” and Ray Stevens’ “Ahab the Arab” in 1962. He also produced hits for Jerry Lee Lewis, Roger Miller, Charlie Rich, and Dave Dudley in the early to mid-1960s.
In 1966, Singleton left Mercury to form his own production company, SSS International, and eventually his own record label, Plantation Records. In 1968, he scored one of the biggest independent-label hits in Nashville history with Jeannie C. Riley’s recording of a Tom T. Hall song, “Harper Valley P.T.A.” The single sold 4 million copies, and the accompanying album more than 500,000 units. Flush with cash from that success, Singleton purchased Sun Records from Sam Phillips.
In the years that followed, he stayed busy conceiving outlandish ways to repackage Sun recordings, all of which allowed him to keep selling the same famous songs over and over again. But his business plan had one major stumbling block: He only had access to a limited number of recordings by Sun’s biggest stars, which, besides Presley, included Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Charlie Rich.
But when Smith contacted him about Jimmy Ellis, Singleton was skeptical about the singer’s potential. Nonetheless, he agreed to meet with the two men. In the meantime, in true enterprising fashion, he began to wonder if Ellis might sound like Elvis even when singing material that Presley never recorded. So when Ellis and Smith arrived for the meeting, Singleton took the singer into the studio. They cut the classic song “Release Me,” as well as several other songs that Presley hadn’t ever recorded. Listening to those recordings now, it’s obvious that Ellis managed to resemble Presley’s vocal tone and mannerisms more than other sound-alikes and imitators. “It sure sounded like Elvis to me,” Singleton affirms.
Drawing on his legendary ability to scheme up unique record promotions, the producer felt the wheels of invention start to turn inside his crafty head: Surely there must be some way to make money off this Southern farm boy, with his jet-black hair and long sideburns. Looking back, Singleton says he only wanted to help Ellis come up with an attention-getting persona—and, of course, to make some money for both of them. “He wasn’t an imitator, he was a sound-alike,” Singleton stresses. “I thought we could do something with him if we came up with an angle that was unique.”
Already, Singleton realized that he needed to continue stoking the idea that Ellis might actually be Elvis. But instead of simply having him sing covers of Presley songs, he began pairing the singer with Presley’s famous colleagues from the Sun Records era. To start, he took Ellis in the studio and put his voice onto some old Jerry Lee Lewis masters, issuing the recordings as Jerry Lee & Friends, in hopes that people would think the unnamed singer was Elvis Presley.
It worked, at least to some degree. “Immediately after I put it out, it got on the radio and of course everyone thought it was Elvis, that it was something I found in the can,” Singleton says. “We kind of had a reputation for doing weird things anyway.” But there were limitations to the gimmick, since there were only so many Sun masters on which Singleton could add Ellis’ vocal. And that’s when the maverick producer came up with his most brilliant stroke yet.
Singleton had heard about Brewer-Giorgio’s unpublished book, Orion: The Living Superstar of Song. Instinctively sensing an opportunity, he decided to contact the author. “I thought that if I could make a deal with this lady, we can take Jimmy and we can make him over to be Orion.” Of course, there were a few sticking points. For instance, Ellis may have had thick black hair and long sideburns, but his was not the familiar face of Elvis.
Leave it to Singleton to come up with a plan: “I thought, ‘If he would just wear a mask, we can make him a star,’ ” Singleton says. But Ellis didn’t exactly embrace the idea of spending the rest of his career peering through a mask. “He didn’t really want to do it,” Singleton says, still incredulous at Ellis’ lack of enthusiasm. “I had an artist here at the time that I had to transform in some way to make him famous, and he was resisting. But, looking back, I think he didn’t like it because he figured none of his friends would know that it was really him.”
Ultimately, Ellis realized he only had two options: put on a mask and take a chance as the mysterious rhinestone Elvis duplicator, or go back home to Alabama and to 15 years of dead-end attempts at becoming a popular performer. Ellis put on the mask and became Orion...and he was in the building, thank you very much.
With Orion’s debut, once again, there were those who thought Singleton had unearthed another batch of lost Elvis tapes from the Sun archives. But this time, Singleton went with his original idea of having the singer cut songs Presley had never recorded. In the process, he tapped right into Brewer-Giorgio’s plotline: When people heard this singer who sounded so uncannily like Elvis, perhaps they’d think that he was Elvis, and that maybe the King had indeed faked his death. After all, he hadn’t recorded these songs before.
In the studio, Singleton set up Orion with a full rock orchestra, approximating the dramatic strings-and-horns sound that Presley favored in his later years. The ensemble recorded a sweeping batch of songs, from Skylark’s 1973 hit “Wildflower” to a swinging version of Nat King Cole’s “Mona Lisa.” Singleton emphasized songs packed with drama and pathos, tunes like “Before the Next Teardrop Falls” and “He’ll Have to Go.”
To make sure people made the connection that this enigmatic vocalist might be Elvis Presley, Singleton launched Orion’s career with a debut album that featured a closed white casket on the cover. The title: Orion Reborn.
As it turned out, Ellis not only sounded similar to Presley when he sang; his speaking voice also resembled the late singer’s slurred twang. So the first single Singleton issued was a cover of an old Everly Brothers hit, “Ebony Eyes.” The song came complete with a recitation in which Orion assumed the hushed speaking voice of a man who, while waiting in an airport to greet his love, discovers the plane has crashed. “People would hear that recitation and get tears in their eyes,” Singleton says.
By this point, it was time to take Orion to the stage. “We had several different masks made, in different colors and styles and things like that,” Singleton remembers. “The first concert we did was done in a high-school auditorium around Athens, Ala. The place was absolutely packed.”
Orion began touring regionally, mostly in the Southeast and Midwest. “As he started doing more and more radio interviews and local television shows and the like, the tabloids picked up on him,” Singleton says. “They started printing that Elvis was really alive and performing every night as Orion. That’s when it really exploded for him.”
The reverberations were felt worldwide. Not only did Orion perform to crowds of 1,000 or more in the South; he also staged successful tours of Europe, proving especially popular in England, Germany, and Switzerland, where newspapers, magazines, and television interviews showered attention on the Masked Man Who Would Be Elvis.
“It was kind of an easy thing to get press on him, because of all the controversy,” Singleton says. “Needless to say, we sold a lot of records too. We sold records in every country where we could get the record distributed.”
Because some people objected to the casket cover on Orion’s debut, Singleton reissued the record with a new sleeve featuring Orion in a mask, his thick black hair and sideburns combed to look as much like Presley as possible. After that, the albums kept coming in a seemingly unstoppable flood of product. Next was a collection called Sunrise—an overt reference to Presley’s first record label. Then Singleton had Orion create a series of albums in which he covered famous songs in a specific genre. There was Orion Rockabilly, Orion Country, a collection of gospel songs titled Orion Glory, and an album of love ballads, Feelings. In all, there were nine albums in three years, and they all sold decently enough to keep Singleton coming up with new angles and schemes.
“I think at one point we had 15,000 fan club members,” Singleton says. “We could guarantee any promoter that at least 500 people would show up at any gig, because there were that many people who were following him around the country. Wherever he was playing, they were there. There were hundreds of people in different parts of the country who would travel 500 miles, 1,000 miles, or whatever to see every show they could see. You’d see the same people at every show.”
The most extreme of the fans were a mother and daughter who lived in a car in the parking lot behind the Sun Records building on Belmont Boulevard. When Orion’s bus took off, the duo followed, buying tickets at each show and sitting as close to the stage as possible. They’d occasionally disappear, only to return again, sometimes following Orion nonstop for months at a time.
Singleton’s theory was that scores of people desperately wanted to believe that Presley hadn’t died, and he was more than happy to exploit that desire. “They really hoped that in some way Elvis could still be alive,” he says. “They wanted to believe so badly. I think that’s why Orion had the kind of following he had.”
In retrospect, it’s hard to imagine that people could have actually believed Elvis Presley was still living, cloaked in the guise of Orion. After all, this is the stuff of crackpot conspiracy theories. And yet the fact that fans latched onto Orion only underscores the incredible power of the Presley myth. And in this particular case, the tale of death and rebirth weirdly mirrors that of another, truly religious icon of Western culture.
It was no doubt a heavy and psychologically taxing burden for Jimmy Ellis to shoulder, and the whole charade started to gnaw at him. On one hand, he’d achieved a measure of the success that he’d always dreamed of attaining. On the other hand, he couldn’t even fully savor it. He heard the applause, but he had to realize it was for the ghost he was resurrecting. Like a character in a Shakespearean tragedy, the conflict burning inside of him only loomed larger the longer he tried to suppress it.
Ellis started talking incessantly of retiring his mask, but the perks of his ersatz stardom were difficult to give up—and that only made the dilemma all the more unresolvable. “After he became Orion, he had women all over him all the time,” Singleton says. “He became hooked on women. He got married at one point, but when he’d take [his wife] on the road, he’d have girls in two or three other rooms sometimes. He’d sneak out of his room and go see the other girls while his wife slept or waited for him to return. They fought a lot.”
Even worse, the role even began to play with Ellis’ very sense of identity. Though he’d grown up on a farm in Alabama, his parents had adopted him from a hospital in Birmingham, Ala. As Singleton tells it, “Jimmy started to do some research, and he came across something that said that Vernon and Gladys [Presley] had some trouble in the mid-’40s and that Vernon had left home for a while. There was this other story that Vernon had spent some time in jail too. So, in Jimmy’s mind, he started to think that maybe he was Elvis’ brother. He thought that maybe he had been fathered by Vernon and put up for adoption.”
Ellis and Singleton began to feud. It started with the singer asking politely about recording under his own name, without the mask. Singleton balked, not wanting to risk trading a money-making venture for a dead-end gamble. But as the producer held out, Ellis grew increasingly insolent; Singleton, in turn, grew angry, feeling that his protégé didn’t appreciate the success or the wealth he’d given him.
Then, on New Year’s Eve of 1981, the tension reached a head: In mid-performance, Orion ripped off his mask during a dramatic crescendo. A photographer captured the moment; the photos made it clear that the man onstage bore little resemblance to Elvis Presley.
“It exposed who he was, and that ended my gimmick,” Singleton says, frowning. The producer immediately severed his contractual ties with the singer. “I told him, ‘You can do something else, or you can keep on being Orion. I don’t care. I’m not going to fool with you anymore.’ ”
Singleton still expresses disappointment over the parting. “He probably could have been a superstar if he would have listened and taken the guidance he needed,” says Singleton, not one to underestimate his own advice. “But he was like most entertainers. Once you create the image and the act, they get to thinking if it wasn’t for them, this wouldn’t have happened. They don’t realize that the creation of the product is what makes them what they are. They go from the opposite standpoint: They think they’re responsible for the success, not the product and the packaging and all the business that puts them there.”
Singleton may exist on the fringes of the Nashville music industry, but his comments only reaffirm that Orion’s tale is a uniquely Nashville tale—one in which the business of music somehow ends up becoming greater than the very sound of music. Elvis may always be associated with the Bluff City, but his doppelganger was clearly a creation of Music City, a town where careers are made and broken and, of course, reborn.
After Singleton and Ellis parted ways, the Sun Records chief was flooded with calls. “Back then, there were probably 100 Elvis imitators out there, and they all tried to contact us to see if we could do something similar with them.” But by that point, the magic—or whatever it was—was gone.
“I told them no. It was a different deal. Jimmy wasn’t an Elvis impersonator. He just happened to sound like Elvis. Of course, nobody believed that. He was always called an impersonator, because of the way he sounded. But...he was just being himself, and we put a mask on him and called him Orion.”
Ellis, meanwhile, continued to record and perform as Orion. He even began to record covers of Presley’s hits, to dress in bejeweled jumpsuits, and to act and move more like Presley onstage. In other words, the man who wasn’t an Elvis imitator started to become one. For years, he continued to make his living on the road and to find different backers who would help him record and distribute albums. In the mid-1980s, he still drew crowds of a few hundred people in some outposts, mostly in rural Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee.
By the ’90s, Ellis was performing fewer than 50 shows a year. He spent most of his time on a farm near Selma, Ala., that he inherited from his parents. Because the land was near a highway, Ellis opened several small stores—a liquor store, a convenience market, a gas station—to serve travelers and locals.
In a 1990 interview with Rick Harmon, a small-town newspaper reporter in Alabama, Ellis expressed disappointment at ever taking on the guise of Orion. “I just wanted to perform, to use the talent that I had,” he said. As the years wore on, Ellis continued to distance himself from his fictional persona, and from the entertainment business as a whole. Last year, he performed fewer than a dozen paying shows, most of them in Europe. He spent most of his time working at his stores in Selma.
If he was never completely able to leave behind his bizarre recording career, at least he had attained a degree of peace about it. But even that was short-lived: On the night of Dec. 12, 1998, Ellis was behind the register at his convenience store when three local teens charged into the store brandishing sawed-off shotguns. The gunmen shot the 53-year-old Ellis, his 44-year-old fiancee Elaine Thompson, and a friend, Helen King. Ellis and Thompson were killed; King was severely wounded but has recovered. Ellis was survived by his son Jimmy Ellis Jr.
After a career paying tribute to a man who led such a glorified life, Jimmy Ellis’ own existence ended abruptly, violently, unfairly. If there’s any kind of parallel to Elvis here, it’s that death is rarely ever reasonable—and yet it unifies us all in the most definitive way. And even if Orion doesn’t inspire the kind of posthumous hero-worship that Elvis Presley does, it’s clear that his talents have regardless survived him.
The man who turned Jimmy Ellis into Orion grants one thing: The singer truly was a gifted vocalist and a charismatic performer. “He really was good,” Singleton says. “I think he could have been a star on his own, except he was burdened by the fact that, no matter what he did, he sounded like Elvis. That’s a shame, but it was something he couldn’t do anything about.”
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 10:50 PM|
Alanna Nash, formerly of the Louisville Courier-Journal, who viewed the body in the casket twice, commented on how wax-like it looked. La Costa, sister of Tanya Tucker, said, "We were right up to the casket and stood there, and God, I couldn't believe it. He looked just like a piece of plastic laying there. He didn't look like Elvis at all... He looked more like a dummy than a real person."
The coffin weighed 900 pounds. Some think it housed a refrigeration unit to cool a wax dummy. Many saw beads of sweat on the body. Dead bodies don't sweat but they do build up condensation.
They have done tests with wax candles and refrigeration units that show the same type of "beads of sweat" that were seen on "Elvis" in the coffin.
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 10:45 PM|
The Incomprehensible Demise of a King
Two people, on totally separate ends of the continent, decide to write a book. They have never met one another. They have never conversed in any way whatsoever, nor have they ever seen each other’s research. They have never even heard of each other. Yet, they write almost identical books, with the same facts, with one central question in mind. Did Elvis Presley really die on August 16, 1977?
The first thing both authors noticed was the inconsistencies with Elvis’ middle name. When Elvis was born there was a mix-up with the spelling of his middle name. They accidentally spelled his middle name as Aaron on his birth certificate. The family went to great lengths to get it changed to Aron. Throughout Elvis’ life, he always signed his name as Aron. His army papers, marriage license, autographs, and contracts were always signed with the one A spelling. However, the spelling on his gravestone is spelled as Aaron.
Another thing they noticed was the placement of the gravestone. Elvis’ current resting place is in between his father and his grandmother and not next to his mother where he had adamantly requested. It is doubtful that the people close to him would allow this to happen. Is it possible that Elvis did not want to violate the ground next to his mother until he was ready to be placed there for good?
Both authors also mentioned the body in the casket. There were multiple problems noticed by several people. Alanna Nash, formerly of the Louisville Courier-Journal, who viewed the body in the casket twice, commented on how wax-like it looked. La Costa, sister of Tanya Tucker, said, “We were right up to the casket and stood there, and God, I couldn’t believe it. He looked just like a piece of plastic laying there. He didn’t look like Elvis at all. He looked more like a dummy than a real person.” Elvis’ own cousin said that he saw beads of sweat on the body and that one of the sideburns was falling off. Everybody knows that dead bodies don’t sweat but wax can build up condensation. Also, glue could look like beads of sweat if it were used to hold sideburns or a hairline in place.
Elvis’ coffin required several pall bearers because it weighed 900 pounds. Attendants at the funeral reported that the air around the coffin was rather cool. It is suspected that the coffin contained an air conditioning unit or dry ice to keep a wax body cool. Also, funeral-goes were curious to know how the Presley family got a custom made coffin ready for the showing of the body that was held on the day after his death. It takes a lot of time to build such an elaborate coffin.
Elvis’ cousin also noticed other problems with the body. He said that the hands of the body in the coffin were very soft even though Elvis had rough, callused hands. He stated that Elvis was an 8th degree black belt in karate and was always breaking boards and blocks. He also noticed that the body had a pug nose and arched eyebrows, unlike Elvis.
Both authors also mentioned the actions of Elvis in the weeks leading up to his death. First, Elvis fired several employees that he had relied on for many years. Also, two days after his alleged death, Elvis was supposed to embark on an extensive U.S. tour. Yet, he ordered no new suits despite having gained 50 pounds since his last tour. Elvis’ weight had reached 250 pounds by August 1977 but his death certificate has him listed at a spry 170 pounds.
Both authors also noticed some problems with the inventory of Graceland after the death of Elvis. The inventory was 84 pages long but one author mentions that it seems to be 84 pages too short. Despite Elvis’ great love for his mother, there were no pictures of her listed. Elvis’ favorite books were not listed. There were 5 pieces of jewelry listed although everyone knows Elvis had lots of jewelry. The list goes on and on, even mentioning that there is a plane missing from the inventory.
In 1970, Elvis was named one of America’s Ten Most Outstanding Young Men by the Jaycees. That honor was for his work in drug enforcement. In the same year, Elvis was appointed as an agent in the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs by President Richard Nixon. Elvis had many death threats due to his work in law enforcement. The U.S. Department of Justice’s Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington confirmed in a letter to Maria Columbus, president of The Elvis Special fan club, that Elvis visited FBI headquarters on December 31, 1970 and was given a tour of FBI facilities. Two months prior to meeting with President Nixon, Elvis was presented with a CNOA Membership Certificate that reads: “This is to certify that Elvis A. Presley is a member in good standing of the California Narcotics Officers Association.” At that time he had been wearing a federal narcotics badge for six years. One fan letter states that several police uniforms were delivered to Graceland on August 15, 1977, the day before Elvis died.
There was a helicopter hovering over Graceland just moments before Elvis was found dead. Monte Nicholson, a police detective, was approached by a man that claimed he had proof that Elvis was alive. He showed Monte pictures of Elvis getting on a helicopter. The man said the pictures were taken just two hours after Elvis’ body was found at Graceland. The man disappeared with the pictures before Monte could authenticate them.
Both authors also mention the inconsistencies of the stories about the death scene. Some members of Elvis’ entourage say he was found in the bathroom. Others say he was found in the bed. It seems to be agreed by all that he was found in a rigor-mortised condition but, Dr. Nichopelous, Elvis’ personal physician, states that they did CPR on the body for 20 minutes after they reached the hospital. Why do CPR on a body that was in rigor-mortis? Also, the body was found in the fetal position. In order to do CPR on a rigor-mortised body in that position, they would have to break bones just to get to the chest.
A member of Elvis’ family called Gail Brewer-Giorgio and told her to compare the handwriting on the letter that Elvis wrote to President Nixon against the handwriting of Elvis’ death certificate. Gail had these documents examined by a handwriting expert and it was determined that the death certificate was filled out by the same person that wrote the letter to President Nixon. Did Elvis fill out his own death certificate? Could this explain why the death certificate had him listed at 170 pounds?
Elvis had the means to fake his own death. Elvis’ manager, Colonel Tom Parker, had once created a new identity for himself. He came to this country as an illegal immigrant from Holland, but through various connections managed to create an elaborate identity complete with a passport, birth certificate, drivers’ license, and social security number. He would have known how to give Elvis a second life.
Both authors wrote a book based on these facts, despite never having met. Their books were written twenty-something years ago and since then they have discovered many more mysteries and inconsistencies surrounding the death of Elvis Presley. They are convinced that Elvis did not die on August 16, 1977.
Brewer-Giorgio, Gail. Is Elvis Alive? New York: Tudor, 1988. Print.
Nicholson, Monte W. Presley Arrangement. [S.l.]: [s.n.], 1987. Print.
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 10:40 PM|
a. Elvis returned to Graceland from the dentist between 12:30 AM and 1:30 AM. He was reported to be energetic, optimistic, good humored, and full of plans for the future.
b. At 4:00 AM Elvis called Billy Smith and Billy's wife Jo to join him and Ginger on the racquetball court for an hour's play. Elvis was still wearing the DEA jogging suit. Elvis reportedly wacked himself on the shin, hard enough to leave a knot on his leg, with his racket during the game. This injury was severe enough to leave a mark on his leg. No mark was noted in the alleged autopsy.
c. At 5:00 AM, Elvis sat at the piano in the lounge area of the racquetball building and sang some songs after the game.
d. At 6:00 AM, Elvis and Ginger went up to his bedroom where he changed into his pajamas (powder blue by most reports), watched TV and read.
e. At 8:00 AM, Elvis told Ginger he was going into the bathroom lounge area to read. Note: The bathroom has its own back entrance that leads downstairs.
f. Between 8:00 and 8:30 AM, Elvis calls Dr. Nichopolous at his office, for some sleeping pills, and although he was not there he spoke with the nurse. Nurse Tish Henley instructed her husband to take a couple of pills to be given to Elvis' Aunt who came by, placed in a small envelope, to give to Elvis.
g. At 9:30 AM, Elvis left the bathroom and went downstairs at which time he signed for a special delivery letter from Paul Lichter.
h. At 10:00 AM, Elvis was seen retrieving his newspaper from the porch.
i. At the very least, three hours transpired before the reported time of the body having been discovered.
j. Between 2:00 PM and 2:30 PM, Ginger Alden awakens, making some phone calls, and then remembers Elvis having gone into the bathroom/lounge area earlier to read.
k. At 2:30 PM, Ginger claims she discovered Elvis' body in the bathroom/lounge area on the floor in front of the commode, where he was purportedly reading, according to police notes. The body was found in a "kneeling" position, with the knees almost touching the chin, resting on the forearms, bent under him, head down, with his face in the carpet. Ginger called down to Al Strada, Elvis' friend/employee who was in the kitchen. Al came upstairs, then called downstairs for Joe Esposito, Elvis' friend and staff manager. Dr. Nichopolous was called. Joe, realizing a problem with Elvis and also noticed that Rigor-Mortis had set in, he called the Fire Department, Rescue Unit # 6. Joe and others rolled the body over and then he (Joe) started CPR.
l. At 2:33 PM, Rescue Unit # 6 arrived at Graceland. The medics continued CPR, despite the body being Rigor-Mortised and with Lividity.
m. At 2:48 PM, the body was transported to Baptist Memorial Hospital.
n. At 2:56 PM, the alleged body of Elvis Presley arrived at BMH, reportedly DOA. (Dead on arrival).
o. At 3:00 PM, family and friends were told that Elvis was pronounced dead.
p. At 3:30 PM, the fans and public were told that Elvis had died.
q. At approximately 7:00 PM, the body was being prepared for an autopsy.
r. At approximately 7:30 PM, the initial body inspection was completed. Note: The body inspection is when the Medical Examiner does an external viewing of the body, making notations as to the condition of the body, noting any signs of injury, etc.
s. At 8:00 PM, Dr. Nichopolous and Dr. Francisco, the Medical Examiner for Shelby County, were interviewed in a press conference.
1. For a 10:30 PM appointment, Elvis returns at 12:30 - 1:30 AM. There is a two to three hour dentist appointment. Was there other business for Elvis to complete, other than having teeth cleaned and a filling tended to?
2. Why would Elvis wear his DEA jogging suit to the dentist? In the normal course of any law enforcement personnel, Officers, Deputies, Troopers or agents don't usually wear uniforms, fatigues, or other official clothing while "off duty".
3. If a filling was tended to, and Elvis had his teeth cleaned, one would have to presume that something was given to him for the pain. This would more than likely be Novocaine and/or some other pain reliever during and after the dental procedure. Why did he have such energy, if he was experiencing pain from the visit to the Dentist.
4. Why on August 15, did Elvis decide that he needed the dental work done right then? Elvis knew the concert tour was about to begin. Elvis had plenty of time prior to the 15th to tend to the dental work.
5. A dentist is also usually very careful on doing dental work on a patient with any known heart conditions. The dentist will usually start an antibiotic prior because of the possibility of infection getting into the system during the procedure. How did he get in to see the Dentist without prior antibiotic treatment. If the alleged heart condition was charted, antibiotic treatment would generally be required. It may be that there wasn't any heart condition!
6. It was noted as interesting that the amount of energy Elvis had to play racquetball, and sing, after a dental appointment, causes some to question the possibility of pain or discomfort effecting him. In much of the research there are indications that Elvis relaxed by playing racquetball and singing. What had him so uneasy? It is probable that he had some anxieties about the great change that was about to occur in his life.
7. There are conflicting statements about Elvis' pajamas that he changed into when he was getting ready for bed. The reports signify a color difference. Some reports state that he was wearing powder blue pajamas, some state that the pajamas were blue top and gold/yellow bottoms. Ginger Alden, who was with Elvis when he changed into his pajamas, was up until he went into the bathroom to read, indicates he was wearing powder blue pajamas. All reports from those who observed the body in the bathroom, indicate that the pajamas were blue tops and gold bottoms. Could this indicate the person who was wearing powder blue pajamas was not the body in the bathroom?
8. Elvis left the bathroom/lounge area and went downstairs to sign for a special delivery letter from Paul Lichter. Did Elvis expect the letter to arrive at a particular time? Why did he sign for it himself, when so many others were available to sign for him.
9. Why was the mail carrier different that day from the usual carrier? The signature on the receipt was not that of the usual carrier. In an interview with a supervisor at the Post Office, the name on the return slip wasn't even recognized as a regular employee. Who was this carrier, and who did he really work for? The commission contends that the carrier was someone who was selected to drive the mail vehicle. No one would ever suspect a mail truck coming and going from Graceland at that time of the day. The theory being that a body was brought in and Elvis was taken off of the property.
10. The contents of the letter to Elvis read as a loving "goodbye". Was the letter sent special delivery to insure Elvis received it before he left? This would assure him that he would always be loved and cared about, especially for the person he really is.
11. At 10:00 AM, Elvis was seen picking up his own newspaper off the porch. His presence was made obvious to others. If he had taken more sleeping pills, why was he still awake? It is probable that the pills were not taken by him. The call to Dr. Nichopolous may have been to offer a clue to show time factors and/or to let the Doctor know he was ready for the plan to be executed?
12. Between 2:00 PM and 2:30 PM, Ginger stated that she awakened and proceeded to make some phone calls then remembers that Elvis wasn't next to her? How could she not notice if Elvis was in the room with her or not. It is thought that she was more concerned about the phone calls she was making than to check on Elvis first. Did she know about the plan? Was she told to discover a body at a certain time? In the mention of a helicopter being seen at Graceland on the 16th, was this aircraft used to remove the manpower utilized in the removal process, acting as a deterrent?
13. Between 2:00 and 2:30 PM a body was found. Many have stated that it did not appear to be Elvis. The body was described as being fixed Rigor-Mortis and with lividity. The positioning of the body was a significant clue, inasmuch as the body could not stay in the fetal position as so described. Muscles tend to relax at the time of death, as the process of Rigor and Lividity set in.
14. A body that is in "fixed Rigor-Mortis and Lividity" is considered obvious death. A medic knows you do not do CPR on a body in this state. Anyone working on the body would not have had easy access to the chest area without first breaking the Rigor which is not easy and is not really probable. How could anyone get an open airway to give artificial respiration. The jaw is "fixed" shut and you can't bend the head back to open the airway. The fixation of Rigor and Lividity would have taken 8 to 12 hours according to medical advice presented to Commission personnel in recent interviews. It is also stated that when the body was rolled over onto the back, a breath was heard. This is a normal in almost any incident involving a death. It is the change in the positioning of the body causing expulsion of any air left in the lungs, or the movement of the body might cause an intake of air, sounding like a breath.
15. There are conflicts as to where the body was actually found. Some reports state 1) Bathroom - In front of commode, 2) Sitting in a chair in the lounge area. In considering the commode theory, why wouldn't Elvis press the intercom if he needed assistance? If he were sitting in the chair, why didn't Elvis pick up the phone and summon for help? In either case Elvis would realize that something was wrong, or that he was not feeling well. It is human nature to "survive".
16. In recent interviews with individuals who were on the scene, why did Dr. Nichopolous purportedly order "no drugs" were to be administered for revival purposes? Did he already know it wasn't really Elvis? Was it someone who was already under his care, playing a pre-determined role in an intricate plan?
17. Why did the medics leave Vernon there? Weren't they realistically afraid of the stress on Vernon, especially knowing he had a history of heart problems, as well as a recent heart attack. Why would he not go to the hospital with his only son? Was it because he knew that it was not his son? Who really went to the hospital that day? Who was the donor?
18. Why did Joe and Dr. Nick identify the body? Why not a next of kin, as done on a regular basis?
19. In the final analysis, how did the father of Elvis Presley do a radio interview two hours after the death report in a very calm and unemotional state?
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 10:25 PM|
This is a radio interview from 2000 where Bill Beeny and myself were interviewed on the subject of Elvis being alive.
RI: Radio Interviewer
MM: Mickey Moran
BB: Bill Beeny
RI: Welcome to the program, Bill.
BB: Thank you, Harlan. It's a privilege to be on your show.
RI: Well, we appreciate you coming on. We also would like to welcome to our talking circle, Mickey Moran. Mickey owns the "Elvis Is Alive" webpage. He joins us from his home office in Louisville, Kentucky. Welcome to the show, Mickey.
MM: Thank you, I'm glad to be here.
RI: Well, thank you for joining us; and Bill let's start with you. What in the world got you into believing that Elvis is still alive?
BB: Well, Harlan, my primary business is real estate. I've been a real estate developer for thirty-some-odd years; and as a diversion we opened the 50's cafe in our little town just to have something different to do; and as time went on, Elvis loomed much larger than the other 50's characters and that's how we got interested particularly in Elvis. That's about the time the stamp came out. And so many people came into the cafe saying, "What's your view on Elvis being alive?" And I thought, "This is ridiculous. Everyone knows that Elvis is dead." Then doubts began to come when people said, "What about this. What about that. And what about the strange things surrounding his death." So, I began to make a study. The thing became a hobby with me and I began to read everything I could get worldwide that had been written, pro and con, to try and arrive at the truth. The more I read the more I became convinced that there was a possibility Elvis was alive. Then I began to do some traveling to interview some people that were close to Elvis; and talk to them about certain aspects of his death. And this increased my belief that Elvis is alive today. But I didn't have that final capstone that would nail it down. Because I wanted proof, not that Aunt Molly saw Elvis at Wal-Mart or some rumor. We have dealt with strictly scientific fact; voice prints, handwriting samples, eye-witness accounts that were at the funeral, medical records, and so-forth. I was on a talk show in Memphis, Tennessee, The Rock Station, and when I ended the show I was called by a medical doctor that said if you'll come to Memphis, I can show you tissue that was taken of Elvis in a biopsy two times, '73 and '75, and I also have in my possession autopsy tissue. If you're interested come down and we'll discuss these possibilities.
RI: Now, was there an autopsy done on Elvis?
BB: There was an autopsy done on 'a body'.
RI: ...a body?
BB: Reported to be Elvis. Yes.
RI: I'm told that at his funeral there was a closed-casket.
BB: No, it was an open casket.
RI: It was an open casket.
BB: There was one picture made of what was reported to be Elvis in the casket. The National Enquirer paid a second cousin $10,000.00 to take a photograph and that photograph is circulated.
RI: Now, Mickey, what makes you think that the King of Rock'N'Roll is still alive?
MM: Well, there's no one thing. There's so many inconsistencies. What got me started was when Gail Brewer-Giorgio came out with her first book Is Elvis Alive? I read that. It overwhelmed me. I started searching everywhere that I could think of; the internet, books, etc. I gathered lot's of information and after putting it all together, I'm convinced. There's no doubt in my mind that Elvis is alive.
RI: But what are some of the things that really make you believe? Bill was talking about these DNA tests and things like that. What is it deep inside you that makes you think that he's still alive?
MM: It's just so many different things like the misspelling on the tombstone and the weight difference that didn't show up on the death certificate...
RI: What is that? What do you mean by the weight difference?
MM: Well, on the death certificate, it shows Elvis as weighing 170 pounds, or whoever they did the autopsy on as weighing 170 pounds, when Elvis obviously weighed around 250 pounds at the time of his supposed death. That put together with all of the other things; the weight of the coffin being supposedly 900 pounds which is an astronomical figure for the weight of a coffin, and there's just so many different things...
BB: The insurance was a big thing also, Harlan. Elvis had three insurance policies. He had two paid-up policies that was worth $1,200,000.00. He cashed these in and that $1,200,000.00 vanished, it just disappeared. When they probated his will they could not find any trace of this $1,200,000.00 from the insurance policies. He also had a policy, a term life, with the Lloyds of London for $3,000,000.00 to be paid at his death. That policy has never been collected on to this day. The reason being, If Elvis is alive, and some of his heirs collected the $3,000,000.00, that would be felony fraud. So, even though some people say that Graceland just didn't need the money so they didn't apply for it, that isn't true. At the time of Elvis' supposed death Graceland was flat broke. They were so broke that they didn't have the money to pay for the moving of Gladys, that was his mother, moving her body from the mausoleum over to the Graceland compound. So the funeral home took a lien against Graceland. Now if they could have had $3,000,000.00 just by collecting his insurance, they certainly would have taken it being as broke as they were.
RI: Did you know that Elvis was Eastern Cherokee?
BB: Yes I did, and also, Elvis gave very generously to many causes of Native Americans.
RI: Claira, welcome to the show.
Caller 1: Good Morning.
RI: Hey Claira, how's it going?
Caller 1: Oh, pretty good. I had always wondered about the name on his tombstone. Are they going to ever correct that if they find out that it's him?
RI: Bill, explain to me more about what's on his tombstone.
BB: On his tombstone is Elvis Aaron Presley and Aron is misspelled. It's AARON which is the biblical spelling of Aaron. Elvis always spelled his name ARON. Now, when Elvis was born the doctor did make a mistake and put on the birth certificate AARON. Gladys, a few months later, had this changed and a new birth certificate made with ARON because he had a twin that was stillborn at the time of the birth, and she had named him Jesse Garon, GARON, so she wanted Aron to match Garon, so she wanted it spelled ARON. On all of his records; military, and any place his name showed on official records it was always ARON. Now the question is, why did they misspell his name on the grave when Vernon, his father, obviously knew his son's name. I can't say for certain. Some said that it's in an event that there was ever something said, this is a fraud, people are paying to go by Elvis' grave and this is a fake and a fraud. Elvis isn't in the grave; and they could say, "Well, this is Elvis AARON." Now, whether that's the case or... Maybe Mickey can shed some light. I don't know why they misspelled the name. If you look on the front gate of Graceland, I noticed this in a recent visit down there, they have a plaque, Elvis ARON Presley on the front gate at the entrance into the compound of Graceland.
RI: Mickey, what do you think?
MM: I think a lot of it plays a part into Elvis' strong feeling toward numerology. He felt that changing the spelling of that middle name would change the vibes and not tempt fate. If you notice, Elvis' name is not the only one misspelled on the tombstones. Elvis' twin brother that was stillborn, his name is also misspelled. His birth certificate, Jesse Garon Presley spelled JESSE and the tombstone is spelled JESSIE. Elvis felt that when one twin died the living twin inherited everything from the dead twin. And he felt that to change the vibes, he would not only need to change the spelling of his name but also of his brother.
RI: Okay, Claira, did you have another question?
Caller 1: Yes. If he is alive and they do find him, what's gonna happen?
RI: Claira, do you think that it's possible that Elvis is still alive somewhere?
Caller 1: It sounds like he is. My sister is a number one fan and she believes that he is.
RI: What was your question again?
Caller 1: If he is alive and they find him, since they said he died and he's alive what are the consequences?
BB: Claira, Elvis has broken no laws. That's the reason they wouldn't take theinsurance money. The $1,200,000.00, he was entitled to that. These were paid up and he could cash them in at any time. Elvis has broken no laws, so, there's no problem there. Furthermore, it is our firm belief that the FBI assisted Elvis in this cover-up. We have 663 pages in our museum of FBI files that pertain to Elvis and his work collecting information. It also documents hundreds of death threats that Elvis had. He was involved in a tremendous sting operation right before the funeral breaking up a mob group called 'The Fraternity' headed by Peter Frederick Pro.
RI: That's not widely known. Tell me more about that.
BB: Elvis always had a desire to be in law enforcement and he was a bona fide DEA agent. A lot of people have Elvis as a druggy that was stoned out all the time. I do not believe this. The FBI would not have a bona fide agent, and Elvis was more than just an honorary agent. In 1970 President Nixon made Elvis an agent at large. He was the first agent at large ever appointed. Since then they have a bureau that has agents at large, but Elvis was the first. He had the little black book that had the other secret undercover agents in it. This would not have been given to somebody that was just honorary. He had a federal agent that played in his band for two years undercover. If you go to the trophy room at Graceland, you'll see a letter from the department of justice thanking Elvis for letting this undercover federal agent play in his band for two years while doing investigation work. The FBI files document the fact that Elvis permitted the Mafia group to swindle him out of a JetStar plane worth $1,200,000.00. When the plane was sold in Miami, the FBI had determined that they had given Elvis phony cashier's checks that were worthless and they moved in and arrested the mob and it's leader, Peter Frederick Pro. Elvis, then, something had to be done to protect him. One of the mob members turned on his group and gave evidence to the FBI and he was immediately put into a Federal Witness Protection Program. Now if it was dangerous for this mob member to be around in the community, think how much more dangerous it was for Elvis. I debated the Elvis bodyguards on CNBC in New York and they had an FBI agent there and they asked him the question, "Is it possible that the FBI could have assisted Elvis and could they have caused him to disappear?" The FBI agent's answer was, "Certainly. This could have been done very easily with the help of the federal government."
RI: Sky, you're on the air.
Caller 2: Good morning.
RI: Hey, what's going on? Have you seen Elvis?
Caller 2: No, but maybe I'll start looking now. My question is, do either of your guests know the actual connection Elvis has with Cherokee nation and what relatives and any of their names?
RI: Well, you know what, Sky, we don't really know that but we did call Graceland and we talked to one of their public relations people and the first tip that I got was when Ellen B. put together the Native American music awards up in Connecticut just this past May and she was telling me, too, that she called Graceland and they said, "Yeah..., Elvis is Eastern Cherokee." But, I don't know. Mickey, do you know more about that?
MM: I know that Elvis' great-great-great-grandmother, her name was Morning White Dove, and she was a full-blooded Cherokee Indian that lived from 1800 to 1835. I don't know much beyond that point.
RI: What about you, Bill?
BB: No, I'm sorry I don't know. I do know that there's an investigation that has been launched by Graceland into this fact.
RI: To me Elvis just had to be native. I mean the way he moved, the way he sang. He just had to be native, and, uh, then I saw that movie when I was growing up, Flaming Star, remember that movie? That was a great show when Elvis was playing an Indian and I was like, Man, this guy's got to have some native blood in him. Sky, you have any other thoughts on this?
Caller 2: No, I just think it's real interesting. I always thought it was a big joke. I was a little young for him but this is an interesting program. All these facts. It could be true.
RI: He disappeared but where did he go? You know, I think I heard some people talking about they saw him out at Hela River in Arizona the other night. So, there are some Elvis sightings in Indian country. Mickey, tell us about your webpage. What do you have on your webpage that people can tap into, maybe you could give your address real quick.
MM: Sure. The address is http://moranandcompany.simplenet.com/elvispage.html Mainly, all of the facts that I have collected over the last 15 years from various books and some facts that I've collected from Mr. Beeny, Gail Brewer-Giorgio, some stuff that I have dug up on my own. I've just compiled it all into one webpage for people to study. That's mainly it.
RI: Bill, if Elvis is alive then why is it so far to find him. It seems like we've got all these investigative reporters, we've got people that are so interested in his life. How can he stay out of the limelight?
BB: It's very simple, Harlan. Two or three things..., first of all, people, when they're looking for Elvis, they have in their minds the Elvis they saw performing. The black hair, the high cheek-bones, tanned skin..., they're looking for that Elvis. We can't conceive of Elvis being old just like we don't conceive of Marilyn Monroe being old. You can't conceive of an old Marilyn Monroe. We knew them as relatively young. Elvis is 62 years old. He has white hair. He's thinned down. He's about 170 pounds now.
RI: Does he still have the sideburns?
BB: He does not have the sideburns. He has shorter sideburns and people are not looking for a man like that. He could walk in our museum along with a group of other people and unless he spoke and that baritone voice came out, or you looked into those blue eyes, you wouldn't even recognize him as being Elvis. We're not looking for a 62 year old Elvis. But the interest is still there. We've had all of the..., NBC, ABC, at our museum. We've had CNN there. Day before yesterday, People magazine came out and filmed for seven hours. The interest is still there. But people are looking for a young Elvis not an older Elvis. And I don't think he has to go in hiding or have any masquerade. He can move around because we're not looking for a 62 year old, gray haired Elvis.
RI: Mickey, what do you think? How can Elvis stay in hiding? I just can't believe if he's alive somewhere that people can't find him, that he's able to fake us all out.
MM: Well, I agree with everything that Bill just said. Also, you have to remember that he has not managed to stay in hiding. Look at how many people have spotted him and called and told other people that didn't believe them.
BB: I think, Harlan, that if Elvis wanted to come out, he would have a hard time proving it. They would say, "Oh, sure you're Elvis." There are a lot of impersonators out there, of course, and I think he would have to do a blood test or DNA all over to prove who he was. People are very skeptical.
RI: Well, let's bring in Greg from New Mexico. Greg, you're on the air. Do you think Elvis could still be alive?
Caller 3: Well, I think he could be but I have this question that bothers me. His death took place supposedly a week before he was to testify on the drug activities. My question is why did they do it a week before his testimony when I'm sure they could have used the testimony and then faked his death a week or two later.
BB: Well, the reason is, the death threats were very imminent on Elvis. The Mafia guy went into hiding. He was immediately whisked away into a program. Elvis had already given countless pages of deposition. He had given all sorts of information, such as the phony cashier's checks that he had gotten for his plane. They had enough evidence to nail this thing down. Elvis was not going to court the next week he was going before the federal grand jury in Memphis, but right in Louisville where Mr. Moran is, Elvis had one of his most serious death threats in Louisville, Kentucky, that the FBI had to rush in and protect him. And I think it was a security matter that this was carried out a week before he was to testify before the federal grand jury.
RI: Mickey Moran, do you believe that this was all part of a cover-up? That the government was actually involved in this?
MM: Oh, definitely. There's no doubt about that.
RI: What makes you think that?
MM: Just like Bill's been talking about. The people that he was going to testify against were very serious people. They were very serious about their death threats. As a matter of fact, it's been stated on a couple of accounts that they managed to sneak into Graceland and leave a note in Elvis' daughter, Lisa Marie's, room stating, "This is how easily we could get to you." That would have to be enough to scare a man into hiding.
RI: Now let's talk about Lisa Marie a little bit more because all of the sudden she was gone too. Do you think that she went with her dad, Elvis, off to some island. I mean that's what I hear a lot, that he went off to some island somewhere and that he took Lisa Marie with him and then all of the sudden, she comes back. From where?
MM: Well, I haven't done a lot of investigation as to what happened to Lisa after that but I understand that Bill has done some.
RI: Okay, Bill. What do you think about this mystery over Lisa Marie because really she was out of the public spotlight for some time.
BB: For ten years. Well, Harlan, this opens up a whole new subject. Perhaps sometime on a different program we can go in depth to it. I'll say just a little bit about it. Lisa Marie also was protected. Priscilla, and I have the old newspaper accounts of this from the '70's, Priscilla and her lover, Mike Stone, that was the karate instructor that she left Elvis for, took Lisa Marie to Europe and left her there to grow up. And the newspaper accounts, we have several of them, that verify this, and we have further evidence and the bombshell is this and we don't have time to get into it and I don't want to deviate off the subject that we have been working on so far. But I can tell you this. The woman who married Michael Jackson is not Lisa Marie Presley.
RI: Are you serious?
BB: I am dead serious. Just as serious that I am that Elvis is alive. We don't have time to bring all of the evidence and I don't want to sidetrack off of the subject that Elvis is alive but this girl has grown up in Europe. Graceland has supported her. We know who Michael Jackson's former wife is. I have given four shows right in Memphis, Tennessee on this and no one has ever refuted it. We're this serious, my son is a well-known attorney in St. Louis and he is currently representing the woman in Europe who has now, very recently, come to this country. He is representing her as her attorney to get her reinstated. There have been footprint tests done that we were able to get done. There have been DNA tests done and this is going to be a huge, huge story.
RI: Let's bring in Ken from New Mexico, you're on the air.
Caller 4: Yes..., I wanted to talk about the spelling of Aron. Elvis had his name legally changed before he died to have the two A's in it to correct the misspelling of his birth. The name Aaron came from Vernon's friend, Aaron Kennedy.
BB: Well, as I said, that was one theory and I didn't subscribe one way or the other as to why. I said I didn't know why they changed it. I do know that on all of Elvis' legal documents right up to the last concert contract that he signed and the last record contracts that he signed, he always used ARON. We have photocopies of these contracts. His army papers was ARON and right up to the 'death', everything that he did that had a legal significance, Elvis always signed his name ARON.
Caller 4: Yes. For most of his life he did but he did have it legally changed.
BB: Do you have the court documents on that?
Caller 4: No, I don't have court documents.
BB: I have never seen a court document. I have heard that rumor but I have never seen anything legally that said this is a fact. Perhaps you have. I haven't.
Caller 4: It's been pointed out in several books.
BB: Yeah. I know it's in several books but I would like to see the document reproduced that says this and some of his, right up to the end, RCA contracts all had ARON on them. And if you look on the front gate of Graceland's compound, they have a huge plaque there and they have ARON on that also.
RI: It's a little far-fetched for me. I just don't think that someone who was such a part of our culture could stay hid.
BB: Let me address that if I could. I don't mean to push Mickey out. Elvis Presley, right before the so-called funeral, was a very, very miserable man and had been for many years. There are many, many biographers that have pointed out that Elvis said, "I would give anything to get out of this life. I am sick of the pressure." It had effected his health. He had twisted colon, glaucoma, he couldn't go anywhere without mobs of people. He couldn't have a normal life. And then when all of this Mafia stuff came down, he put tin foil on his windows, he was a prisoner in his own home and he was totally miserable. He wanted a life that he could live and that he could enjoy. And that made since.
RI: Mickey, what do you think about this? Where could he possibly be?
MM: There's millions of places he could be. Like Bill said, he could be right in front of us and we would never recognize him, the way that he would look today. One other point that is a little surprising that has not been brought up yet is that Elvis is still listed as the tax-payer and owner of the property that Graceland sits on. Why would it be listed in a dead person's name? When this was brought up to the assessor for Shelby County, he was unable to explain it. That's one that still has to be explained.
BB: Also, we might point out that his funeral, Elvis, of course, was in the service and very proud of it and everyone to this day is very proud that Elvis didn't try to dodge the draft or go in as an entertainer. But, Vernon, would not allow a military funeral. There was no guns fired. There was no military aspect to the funeral. Because Elvis was an extremely patriotic person, and since this was a fake funeral, he felt this would be a shame on him and the government that he loved so very much. There was no military funeral at the time of his supposed death.
RI: Let's bring in Bob from Oregon. Bob, you're on the air.
Caller 5: Elvis, he did it his way. He was here for the longest time and he also mentioned that he was gonna die when his mother died. I don't know if you remember that. His mother died at about the same age and he really felt bad about that. He loved his mother dearly. He said that he was going to die around the same age that his mother died. He's gone. A lot of people don't want to let him go but..., I don't know. Elvis will always be the king.
RI: Bob, are you a big Elvis fan?
Caller 5: You bet.
RI: When you grew up, did you want to be Elvis?
Caller 5: In a way I wanted to be like him but I didn't want to be him. I wanted to sing like Elvis. I wanted to be dressed like Elvis. I even let my sideburns grow. My hair was cut like his but I didn't want to be him. I just wanted to be like him.
RI: Let's go to Lorna in New Mexico. Hello Lorna.
Caller 6: Yeah. I have always thought that Elvis seemed very unhappy. Unable to come to grips with the fame and the admiration of his fans and how limited his life had to be as a result of that. He certainly had the resources to do what you're describing. But, you're also describing something that sounds an awful lot like a witness protection program. Under those types of programs, all of his assets, including his real assets, would have been liquidated and run through a series of banks sort of like a money laundering scheme and then the money would have surfaced again in some kind of an account that he would have had access to. This did not happen.
BB: This is exactly what did happen. As I said, Elvis had cashed in a policy for $1,200,000.00 and this money did disappear and I think it was laundered and cleaned and Elvis was able to use it. Graceland was in bad financial shape at that time and there was not millions laying around in bank accounts. It was in very bad financial shape. It was only after they brought in people and began marketing the Graceland house and the licensing that Graceland began to make the money. The $300,000,000.00 that Graceland is reportedly worth today did not exist back in 1977. It was flat broke. But the $1,200,000.00 did go with Elvis and was laundered and he did get the benefit from it.
Caller 6: I hope he did do what you are describing.
RI: Could it be that they actually changed the way Elvis looked?
BB: I have no indication that there was any facial features changed. Now the bodyguards that I debated on NBC that put down what I had to say; the producer came and called me a month later and said, "Do you know who has just written an article in People magazine in London and is saying that Elvis is alive?" ...and I said, "No." He said, "The very guys you debated." And they described, and this is in my book, they described that how, in a trailer behind Graceland, where one of them lived, that Elvis sat down with them and said he had been negotiating with a man who is terminally ill and when he dies I have agreed to support his family as long as I'm alive. Elvis then said, "He will donate his body and on the day he dies, I will die." That man was somewhat younger than Elvis. He weighed 170 pounds, which fit just what Mickey was saying. The death certificate has Elvis at 170 pounds. Elvis weighed 256 pounds. My question that I outline to people is, "How did Elvis lose 86 pounds going to the morgue?" It's biologically impossible.
RI: I'm still not convinced that Elvis is still alive. Do you have something to tell me that will just blow my mind?
BB: Well..., we have irrefutable DNA and you can't get any stronger than that. We have two samples of his biopsies from 1973 and 1975. They are marked with a Baptist Memorial stamp on them. We have the autopsy sample of tissue. These were sent to a biolab in North Carolina and they came back saying that these are two different people. If we can't believe DNA, I don't know what we could believe.
RI: Bill and Mickey. I would like to thank you for joining us today. We appreciate your time.
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 10:25 PM|
12/21/1970 - That is the day Elvis received his DEA badge. Not an honorary one, the real thing. A lot of people do not know that Elvis Presley put his life on the line for America almost everyday. Elvis had to give testimony at grand jury hearings. He put a lot of Mafia men away for good. In June of 1977, President Carter received the report from the FBI that there were 3 contract hits put out on Elvis Presley. The first one was Paul Castellana, the New York City Italian mobster. The second was the Weatherman Underground. The third was the Black Panthers. That's when President Carter recommended Elvis Presley for the witness protection program.
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 11:35 AM|
1. Elvis' name is misspelled on his tombstone. Elvis' full name is
Elvis 'Aron' Presley..., not Elvis 'Aaron' Presley. His father would
not have let this happen. When Elvis was born, his name was misspelled
on his birth certificate and his father went to great lengths to get
the error corrected. The spelling of Elvis' name was very important to
the Presley family. They wanted Elvis to see that Aron was part of
Garon (Garon is the middle name of Elvis' twin brother that was
stillborn). Why the misspelling on the tombstone? Some say it is
because Elvis did not want to tempt fate.
2. Elvis' current resting place is in between his father and his
grandmother and not next to his mother where he had adamantly
requested. It is doubtful that the people close to him would allow
these things to happen. Elvis is a superstitious man - enough so that
he wouldn't tempt fate by putting his real name on a tombstone, or
violate the ground next to his mother until he was ready to be placed
there for good.
3. Elvis was very vain, and he was embarrassed about his recent weight
gain - An astonishing 50 pounds in the month before his so-called
death. Even though he weighed 250 pounds at the time of his death, his
death certificate lists him at a spry 170 pounds. The original death
certificate disappeared, and the current death certificate is dated two
months after his alleged death.
4. Elvis' coffin required several pall bearers because it weighed 900
pounds. Attendants at the funeral reported that the air around the
coffin was rather cool. It is suspected that the coffin contained an
air conditioning unit or dry ice to keep a wax body cool. A wax body
that was a replica of Elvis designed to fool funeral- goers. And how
did the Presley family get a 900 pound, custom made coffin ready for
the showing of the body that was held on the day after his death? It
takes a lot of time to build such an elaborate coffin. Alanna Nash,
formerly of the Louisville Courier-Journal, who viewed the body in the
casket twice, commented on how wax-like it looked. La Costa, sister of
Tanya Tucker, said, "We were right up to the casket and stood there,
and God, I couldn't believe it. He looked just like a piece of plastic
laying there. He didn't look like Elvis at all... He looked more like a
dummy than a real person."
5. And why have the funeral so quickly? Some speculate that the
immediacy was intended to make it as difficult as possible for the
people who were Elvis' biggest fans (heads of fan clubs, etc.) to
attend the proceedings. It could be a concern that they might recognize
the flaws in the wax replica..., many of which were noticed anyway.
6. Elvis was an 8th degree black belt whose hands were rough with
calluses, yet the body in the coffin had hands that were soft and
pudgy. The body in the coffin had a pug nose and arched eyebrows
(unlike Elvis) and most importantly, one of the sideburns on the corpse
was loose and falling off. A hairdresser later reported gluing the
sideburn back on the body.
7. Two hours after Elvis' death was announced publicly, a man who
reportedly looked remarkably like Elvis purchased a ticket for Buenos
Aeries, paid in cash, and used the name John Burrows: the name Elvis
had used as an alias several times before.
8. He had a few books that were considered to be his most prized
possessions. He had a Bible, several pharmaceutical books, books on
death, and most importantly Cheiro's Book of Numbers and the
Autobiography of a Yogi. After his death was announced, these books
disappeared and were never recovered. Also missing were specific pieces
of jewelry and pictures of his mother.
9. In the weeks preceding his alleged death, Elvis' actions were not
those of a man who was about to embark on an extensive US tour. He
ordered no new suits despite having gained 50 pounds since his last
10. Elvis fired several employees that he had relied upon for a long
11. Two days before his alleged death, Elvis telephoned a friend of his
named Miss Foster (Elvis had been friends with her for a long time
because she reminded him of his mother). He told her that he wasn't
planning on going on the upcoming tour. She asked him if he had
canceled it, and he said that he had not. When she asked if he was ill,
he said that he was fine, and that she should not ask any more
questions or tell anyone anything, and that she should not believe
anything she reads. He told her that his troubles would all soon be
over, and that he would call her in a few weeks. The author of 'Elvis
Where Are You?' writes that Miss Foster took a polygraph test regarding
this story, and that she was not lying.
12. The day after Elvis' alleged death, a woman named Lucy De Barbon, a
former lover of Elvis', received a single rose in the mail. The card
indicated that the flower was from "El Lancelot". This had been her pet
name for Elvis, and it was a name that no one else knew. Flowers can't
be sent from beyond the grave.
13. Elvis had many reasons to fake his death. Elvis' life was in
danger. He had recently lost $1,300,000 in an airplane/real estate deal
with a California based organization called the "Fraternity" that had
links to the Mafia. It is speculated that he corroborated with the
government to expose the organized crime ring in exchange for
protection - perhaps in the form of a new life and identity compliments
of the witness relocation program.
14. Elvis was a prisoner of his own fame. He had many other reasons to
leave his life behind. Because of his incredible popularity, he was the
recipient of several death threats, and he was concerned about the
safety of his ex-wife and daughter. Sometimes when he wanted to leave
Graceland, he would send out look-alikes to distract would be
followers. Elvis was also known to ride in the trunk of someone else's
car to avoid detection.
15. Elvis had the means to fake his own death. He is accused of
destroying himself with drugs. In reality, Elvis was a pharmaceutical
expert. He took a lot of drugs, but he knew what he was doing and was
extremely careful. He knew what drugs he could self- administer to
create a deathlike state. Further, Elvis' experience with the martial
arts was such that he could slow his heart rate and breathing in order
to feign death. He was an eighth degree black belt.
16. Elvis' manager, Colonel Tom Parker, had once created a new identity
for himself. He came to this country as an illegal immigrant from
Holland, but through various connections managed to create an elaborate
identity complete with a passport, birth certificate, drivers' license,
and social security number. He would have known how to give Elvis a
17. Elvis' Lloyds of London life insurance policy still has not been
cashed in. Why? It is not illegal to fake your death as long as you
don't profit from it.
18. There was a helicopter hovering over Graceland just moments before
Elvis was found dead. Did Elvis get on that helicopter? Did the
helicopter drop off another body to take Elvis' place? Monte Nicholson,
a veteran with the Los Angeles Sheriff's Dept., writes in his novel The
Presley Arrangement about a government helicopter hovering over
Graceland, and finally landing in the back. Nicholson was informed
there were pictures of Elvis getting on the helicopter during the early
afternoon of August 16. Others report seeing a helicopter - including
Larry Geller in his book If I Can Dream: Elvis' Own Story, who says he
saw from his window at Howard Johnson's: helicopters hovering over
19. According to handwriting experts, Elvis' own handwriting was on his
death certificate/coroners report.
20. Some of Elvis' closest friends were asked, by Vernon, not to attend
21. Elvis' father refused to have his son's coffin draped with the
American flag, traditionally given to all dead veterans. Did he know
that the coffin did not contain his son's body?
22. In December 1970, Elvis was inducted into the Drug Enforcement
Agency (DEA) by President Nixon. Elvis had just been awarded one of
America's Ten Outstanding Young Men for his efforts to wipe out drugs.
Elvis went undercover for the DEA and helped put one of America's
largest crime rings behind bars. This particular undercover operation
was coded 'Operation Fountain Pen'. Was Elvis really addicted to
drugs..., or was he the ultimate actor after all? The U.S. Department
of Justice's Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington confirmed in
a letter to Maria Columbus, president of The Elvis Special fan club,
that Presley visited FBI headquarters on December 31, 1970 and was
given a tour of FBI facilities. Two months prior to meeting with
President Nixon, Elvis was presented with a CNOA Membership Certificate
that reads: This is to certify that Elvis A. Presley is a member in
good standing of the California Narcotics Officers Association. Once
when Elvis was on stage, he wanted to prove to the audience that he was
not strung out on drugs like everyone said he was. He then displayed a
certificate to the audience and said, "This if from the International
Narcotics Enforcement Association. This Certificate gives me special
honors and a lifelong membership. I've been wearing a federal narcotics
badge for six years. They don't give you that if you're strung out."
One of the fan letters states that several police uniforms were
delivered to Graceland on August 15, 1977.
23. The Elvis estate demanded that no cameras be brought to the
24. One month prior to August 1977..., $1,000,000.00 was withdrawn from
his personal checking account.
25. The medical examiner's report says that the body was found in the
bathroom in a rigor-mortised condition. The homicide report says that
the body was found in the bedroom 'unconscious'.
26. What about the tape - authenticated - that was sent to a top
voice-identification expert, on which Elvis talked about things that
did not occur before August 1977?
27. What about the mind-boggling picture taken in the poolhouse behind
Graceland's Meditation Gardens four months after the death of Presley
and showing a man seated who looked exactly like Elvis? Mike Joseph
took this photograph in January 1978 while on vacation and visiting
Meditation Gardens. There is an audio recording of Mike Joseph stating
that the person in that photograph is Elvis. Later, after a meeting
with Joe Esposito and Al Strada, he changed his story. Now he says that
he never stated that it was Elvis in the photograph even though he was
recorded as saying it was.
28. "I may not look good tonight, but I'll look good in my coffin,"
said Presley on his last concert tour, 1977. At a different time he
said, "I know I look fat now and I'll look terrible for my TV special
coming up. But I'll tell you this: I'll look good in my casket."
29. "If I should return you would not recognize me" is underlined in
one of Elvis' favorite books.
30. In 'Elvis, My Brother', Billy Stanley noted that Elvis was wearing
a jogging suit with the DEA logo during the early morning hours of
August 16, 1977.
31. There are 663 FBI pages on Elvis, much of the material consists of
files dated after August 1977.
32. Phone records show that Ginger Alden, Elvis' girlfriend at the time
of his alleged death, phoned the National Enquirer one to three hours
before calling downstairs for help when she found Elvis in the bathroom
floor. How did she know to call them one to three hours before there
was anything to call about? Did she know that there was going to be a
body in there later in the day?
33. What about the sightings, many by very credible people?
34. Elvis believed that he was chosen by God for something special. He
thought he had special powers like, hands-on-healing. I think he may
have had some special gifts other than his voice. Elvis was always
studying about religion. He didn't want to take any chances when it
came to getting into the Kingdom of Heaven. One of his favorite books,
which you will find on display at Graceland now, was The Passover Plot
by Hugh Schonfield in 1966. The book is a story of how Jesus may have
faked his death and came back 16 years later instead of being
resurrected. Elvis may have faked his death and given up all worldly
possessions in an effort to make it into the Kingdom of Heaven. Elvis
once mentioned to a friend that he would like to become a Monk. After
August 16, 1977, a man dressed as a Monk went into a popular
entertainment club. Another customer reported that the face under the
hood looked remarkably like Elvis Presley. As it turns out, the club
was owned by a good friend of Elvis'.
35. There were orders by the Presley Estate that no cameras be brought
to the funeral. However, one of Elvis' relatives, Bobby Mann, managed
to sneak one in. The picture he took appeared on the front of the
National Enquirer. It is evident in the picture that it is not Elvis
36. Elvis was pronounced dead at 2:56 PM. Between that time and when
the body was viewed the next day, there seemed to be enough time to do
all of the following: Autopsy and embalming were completed, the body
was back at Memphis Funeral Home around 8:00 PM, sixteen white
limousines were ordered, a white Cadillac hearse was readied, a
specially designed casket was ordered and flown in, a casket blanket of
500 red roses was made, the security and police were ordered, the tour
was canceled, personal calls were made by Vernon to fan club presidents
asking that they not attend, clothing was chosen, songs were chosen,
ministers contacted, the procession planned, and the body was put on
private display by 11:30 the next morning.
37. Dee Presley, Elvis' stepmother, said she received a call from
someone sounding like Elvis, saying things only Elvis knew.
38. A picture taken September 23, 1984 shows Muhammad Ali, Reverend
Jesse Jackson, and what appears to be Elvis Presley. When Muhammad Ali
was in Fort Worth, Texas, toward the end of 1989, promoting his
cologne, two people showed him the picture. As reported by the Fort
Worth Star-Telegram, Ali identified the man in the picture with him as
"My friend Elvis." Also, in late 1989, a lady showed the picture to
Elvis' step-brother, Billy Stanley. Billy pointed the man out as being
Elvis Presley. He said he wanted a copy of the picture to put on his
office wall to prove that Elvis was not a racist.
39. Priscilla made wildly contradictory statements about where she was
on the night of Elvis' death. Elvis' road manager let it slip that he
was worried about Priscilla and daughter Lisa Marie at Graceland after
Elvis' death -- a time period when Priscilla was SUPPOSED to be in Los
40. Joe Esposito said, on the Geraldo show June 18, 1990, "In the
first place, how can he commit suicide? He's living in Kalamazoo,
|Posted by Mickey Moran on December 27, 2012 at 11:15 AM|
"The Case For Elvis Being Alive"
Since August 1977 the Elvis world has been a fertile ground for the promotion of numerous stories and theories. Those that have captured the imagination or interest of fans and non-fans include Elvis's alleged illegitimate children, Elvis being murdered or having committed suicide and Elvis being abducted by aliens.
However, since the late 1970s there has been one area of interest and belief that has existed continually in the Elvis world and periodically assumed prominence in the media. It is an issue that refuses to go away the intriguing idea that perhaps Elvis Presley didn't die on August 16, 1977. The ongoing interest in this idea parallels the level of interest and fervour exhibited regarding the deaths of JFK and Marilyn Monroe.
The possibility of Elvis still being alive continues to fascinate and frustrate many Elvis fans. The subject is probably the most discussed 'special interest' topic on the numerous Elvis message boards with several boards devoted solely to it and a vibrant Elvis 'underground' continuing to thrive today. The postings on the message boards number in the hundreds with a similar number of threads, while the 'underground' network has produced several regular newsletters on the subject. There are also competing groups within the Is Elvis Alive? sub-culture with one group referring to its members as "Gatheringites".
Gail Brewer-Giorgio's book 'Is Elvis Alive?' reached the top ten of the best seller lists in the USA and sold more than 1 million copies, making it one of the biggest selling Elvis books of all time! In total, at least 10 books have so far been published on the subject since the publication of the novel, Orion, in 1979.
Is it the truth?, wishful thinking?, delusionary minds?, misguided fans? Whatever the truth, there is no doubting that the subject of the death of Elvis Presley is a fascinating one with many plot twists and turns, and one that clearly divides the Elvis world.
The following represents a prepared list of questions from EIN directed to Phil Aitcheson, the Executive Liaison, and retired Director of The Presley Commission. Certain matters regarding the work of the commission from 1992 through the current day, are of a confidential nature. As a result, answers to some questions are limited in nature to maintain the security of the group's ongoing activities, with regard to the life and times of Elvis Aron Presley.
The Presley Commission was formed in 1992 to undertake a serious examination of the death of Elvis Presley and based on inconsistencies surrounding reports of his death, consider the theory that perhaps Elvis didn't die on August 16, 1977. The Commission is composed of a network of individuals who had been interested in Elvis's death for some time. The Commission differentiates itself from other believers in that it has always adopted a professional, research based approach to its subject matter and does not engage in the ridiculous and vindictive personal attacks that typify many believers active on the Is Elvis Alive? message boards.
The Commission's research resulted in the publication of The Presley Commission Report in 1995 (now out of print). The Report received minimal publicity but independent journalists lauded it for its structured, bureaucratic style and inclusion of copies of actual documents to support its case. Since 1995 members of the Commission have continued to work on core issues in the report, in particular the controversial issue of DNA samples. In this detailed and challenging interview with EIN, Phil Aitcheson takes us into the world of the Is Elvis Alive? movement, particularly The Presley Commission, its findings and current work.
EIN: Phil, many thanks for taking the time to talk to EIN.
PA: I am pleased to be here today, and appreciate the opportunity to talk with you.
EIN: Can you tell us about the genesis of the Presley Commission and who its principal members are?
PA: While the Presley Commission members have requested that their identities be kept largely confidential, I can say that the beginning of their investigative research activities started in March 1992, and that I am the former Director, and now Executive Liaison. The commission is totally independent, and is not directly associated with Graceland Enterprises, other than being supportive of their continuing efforts to portray the memories of Elvis' brilliant entertainment career and life.
EIN: What are the credentials of those involved in The Presley Commission?
PA: The Presley Commission utilized the personal and professional talents and abilities of a large number of individuals, who were capable of providing information and assurances that the evidence, both the previously obtained, and the ongoing, were researchable and verifiable. This included a number of professional people, from the fields of law enforcement, paramedical, medical, and literary areas of expertise. Most of the people already were maintaining activities in their respective careers, and assisting the commission on a voluntary basis. Their mere interest and respect for Elvis Presley brought them together, to assist in this historical effort.
EIN: How did you, personally, become involved with The Commission?
PA: As a principal founder, it was my responsibility to enrol the assistance of these professionals in an effort to establish a team, that would ultimately explore, process, or classify the evidence exhibits, and results of numerous interviews. My office moved forward to establish a non-profit effort to determine the facts and further educate the public about Elvis' life, only after my professional colleagues approved the effort.
EIN: Is it a fair comment to say that the Commission was largely unknown to most fans and operated largely as an 'underground' organisation?
PA: While the Commission's efforts were not widely publicized at first, there were a number of members of the media who held interviews with my office to determine the logistics of our intentions and efforts. So in essence, it was publicized fairly much, from the standpoint of interviews, but the organisation mainly operated 'semi-covertly', maintaining great caution, and respect for the people who ultimately would come to be known as 'involved'.
EIN: Why did you choose to operate away from the public gaze (so to speak)?
PA: The Presley Commission operated in this manner so as to maximise the level of results in direct proportion to investigative efforts. It was critically important that our people did not compromise the safety and security of Elvis, or his family, during our interview efforts. As a result, more information became available to the Commission to analyse and process throughout the initial stages of their research.
EIN: For those not aware of the essential concerns or issues of The Presley Commission can you outline them?
PA: Some of the primary concerns of commission investigative researchers dealt with the events of 1970 to 1977 in the early stages, but later, their attention turned toward continuing events and incidents that occurred after Elvis' alleged death, i.e. "Fountain Pen" investigations, document studies, and sightings, as well as physical evidence such as handwriting exhibits, voice prints, and many other matters. The Commissions' intention was to be a clearing house for information, within legal and logistical parameters.
EIN: What process(es), research and activities did The Commission follow in developing its case and preparing its report?
PA: The Commission conducted a wide range of interviews, and collected documentation, with regard to items of evidence that had come to our attention. In addition, each person was assigned to research items and incidents that required official attention. In some cases, interviews were carried out 'in person' whenever possible. All investigative research efforts were managed by the Executive Co-ordinator's office, and verified by my office.
EIN: The Presley Commission Report was published in 1995. What did the Commission want to happen at that time?
PA: It was important in our view to educate the public about the findings, and to further explore the questions that were prevalent at the time concerning Elvis' disappearance, as the commission later ruled. Our main interest was to see the end of a great controversy that had mesmerised Elvis' public since his leaving in 1977. We felt that it was vital for Elvis' privacy to be protected and respected. The Commission opened up the field 'so to speak', for further debate, but serious consideration of the facts. All research was conducted for this purpose.
EIN: Did you promote the report, and if yes, how and to what target audience(s)?
PA: The report was primarily promoted to the news media and to fans who had maintained an interest in this case. It was not promoted however, as a profit making venture. It was not tied to the parties of Elvis' estate as some of my critics would have you believe. It was provided to the public, in the public interest. However, continuing events have called for further action in the case (discussed later). The media did make gestures of reporting internationally.
EIN: Was the report sent to President Clinton (as had been mooted in the lead up to its publication)?
PA: Yes, the White House was informed of the release. In addition, other governmental organisations were informed of the publication of the report.
EIN: Did The Presley Commission find that the "alleged" death of Elvis Presley on August 16, 1977 was in fact a conspiracy? If not, what were the principal findings of the report?
PA: While many would like to consider the "conspiracy factor" a major part of the case, it certainly is an aspect of our analysis effort. It's important to remember ultimately, the causes of events in August of 1977, that brought about the announcement of his reported demise. Elvis' activities outside of his entertainment career, were a large part of those causes and concerns.
EIN: If Elvis Presley is still alive who was in on the conspiracy from day one?
PA: While we never liked the word 'conspiracy', a plan was formulated to remove Mr. Presley from the property that day. It is the primary directive of this organisation to not jeopardise individuals who were knowledgeable. I can tell you however, that it was a relatively small group of people close to the entertainer who were aware of a distinct and deliberate plan. There is also great probability that key figures in the government and close family members were also entrusted.
EIN: Did members of his family and entourage know Priscilla, Lisa Marie, the Stanley brothers, Joe Esposito?
PA: In determining the involvement of certain family members in a plan to implement Elvis' exit, it is understood that anyone else closely associated with Elvis, would normally not be responsive to questions about their knowledge of matters. It is assumed, that certain members of the family closest to Elvis would know not to be alarmed at what would develop during the week of August 16th, if in fact they were involved or knowledgeable. Anyone close to the entertainer would automatically have the responsibility of keeping the secret, about the events of that time.
EIN: How active is the Commission in 2003?
PA: The Presley Commission is continuing to monitor matters pertaining to Elvis' disappearance in 1977, and is active in maintaining intelligence related to the entertainer's whereabouts, as well as his intentions for future public contact, if desired.
EIN: And in 2003 who are the Commission's principal members?
PA: The Presley Commission is a small nucleus of researchers who are credited with the progress being made to answer questions surrounding current circumstances. Their identities are withheld to protect their sources and works. The group has been reduced in size to accommodate a more concentrated effort.
EIN: Does The Commission still publish its newsletter 'Search'?
PA: No, the newsletter is not being published. Occasionally letters are written to answer inquiries about Commission materials, but that is all.
EIN: Phil, can we discuss a few of the major issues or indicators The Presley Commission believes point to Elvis not dieing on August 16, 1977. Firstly, the spelling of 'Aaron' (not 'Aron') on the gravestone. Why is this important?
PA: In the early days of previous investigations surrounding the property of Elvis Presley Blvd., the fans first noticed the middle name having been misspelled, as 'Aaron', instead of 'Aron'. The Commission contacted the FBI and were informed that the correct spelling of Elvis' middle name, that was on file was correctly spelled as 'Aron'. Some thought that Vernon had misspelled to show that his son was not really 'gone'. Others are of the belief that the different spelling placed Elvis as a man on a different spiritual plane, something that tied into his interest in numerology at the time. The Commissions' official position is that the statement made by the FBI about the spelling of 'Aron' being correct.
EIN: The Death Certificate. Tell us about that.
PA: The actual death certificate for Elvis Presley was not even signed until approximately two months after the alleged occurrence. However, the Pre-Autopsy Report by the Medical Examiner in the case, Jerry Francisco, was considered shortened at best, and has been confirmed to contain consistent handwriting of the 'alleged deceased'. The Commission concurs with these findings.
EIN: Much has been made regarding the weight of the coffin with suggestions that a wax body was inside. What are your views?
PA: The Commission became aware of an incident involving a wax figure that was purchased by a prominent member of the family, and was to be used for some bizarre purpose. An interview was conducted with an eye witness who was on the premises when this sale took place. What the figure was intended for is unknown, but comments were made at the time of the sale that raised eyebrows. The contention is that the weight of the coffin was caused by the presence of the wax figure and potential cooling equipment, which would cause it to be heavier than an autopsied human cadaver in the same type of casket.
EIN: There were rumours of an underground escape tunnel at Graceland. What can you tell us about that?
PA: Several individuals informed the Commission about the 'alleged' tunnel. There was even some discussion about it being part of the 'Underground Railroad' during the Civil War, but no evidence has since surfaced confirming its actual existence. If it's really there, it's probably impassable, but the Commission has no official position to convey at this time.
EIN: Another interesting part of the Elvis is Alive argument centers around his Lloyds of London insurance policy. Was a claim ever made?
PA: The Commission is not aware of any such claim ever having been filed.
EIN: EIN understands that Elvis actually had three life insurance policies and that a claim was made against two of them. What were the amounts involved in these two and as they were claimed against why wasn't a claim made against the third policy?
PA: It is the Commissions' understanding that the two policies in question were paid up policies, and Elvis was the owner cashing them in. The third policy was never filed against to our knowledge. Elvis was entitled to the funds, since the policies were paid up.
EIN: Elvis, the Mob ('The Fraternity') and the Witness Protection Program the Operation Fountain Pen argument. What did The Presley Commission uncover?
PA: The Commission can only take partial credit for assembling some of the information concerning The Fountain Pen investigations. The original court documents were examined by questioned documents experts. The findings indicated handwriting consistent with the 'alleged deceased'. The Commission and others determined that the Witness Protection Program as stated by the U.S. Marshalls Service was not the program Elvis would have entered. As a Federal Agent at Large, another in house program would have been explored. There is no question that Operation Fountain Pen was an integral part of the reasons for what happened on August 16, 1977. The Commission again concurs with the findings and discussions that also seem to implicate government involvement.
EIN: Phil, many fans are highly dismissive, even critical, of the Is Elvis Alive? sub-culture. What reactions have you experienced when your participation in the subject becomes known?
PA: Aside from the usual ribbing, that accompanies bewilderment and normal questions, my experiences with the subject have brought about many fine relationships. Of course there are those who wish to 'kill the messenger', so to speak, and it is best said, "for those who don't believe, no explanation will suffice', 'and for those who do believe, no explanation is necessary", to paraphrase one author on the subject. The majority of my experiences have been positive and rewarding.
EIN: As a result of her books on the subject, Gail Brewer-Giorgio is the highest profile proponent of the Is Elvis Alive? issue. Rightly or wrongly, she is also regarded by many fans as 'only out for the money'. What would you say in response to this view and is Gail still involved with the Commission in 2003?
PA: Gail Giorgio is both a friend and colleague. Her works are based on honest and verifiable research. Her books were a critical beginning point in the quest for knowledge about the events of August 16, 1977. She is a kind and talented writer with an outstanding grasp of the hard work and endurance it takes to be in her business, and The Commission is thankful for her past participation. The Commission takes no responsibility for processing the opinions of others. We consider them, and they get classified. The continued attacks on Gail Giorgio's character or that of anyone else involved in this story, are every bit unnecessary.
EIN: In Ms Giorgio's last book, Elvis Undercover, there was mention of a follow-up release focusing on Operation Fountain Pen. What is the latest on this book?
PA: The book 'Elvis Undercover' was recognised as having a great deal of information about Operation Fountain Pen, and the case is so extremely complicated, because it involved many more people than Elvis and his family, volumes could be written about it. Gail's primary concern, we believe was to portray more important details that would enable her readers to follow the case more easily, and understanding its overall importance in Elvis History. More will be told in later publications.
EIN: Another prominent member of The Presley Commission was Monte Nicholson, author of the now very rare and highly sought after novel, The Presley Arrangement. Is he still involved with The Commission?
PA: Mr. Nicholson is currently retired. I have no knowledge of his current whereabouts. His works were very creative, and well written. His previous private work in this case was exemplary.
EIN: Other proponents of the subject include Steven Chanzes, aka Al Jefferies (author of Elvis, 1935? Where Are You?) and the late Major Bill Smith (author of The Memphis Mystery). Were either of these authors involved with The Presley Commission. If not, do you have a view or position on their stories?
PA: The Commission is aware of the works of the authors, and is familiar with their writings. These publications were reviewed and discussed briefly in The Presley Report, published in the nineties. There is an acknowledgement of their works in the Commission files.
EIN: More recently, Dr Donald Hinton Md. has entered the debate with his book' The Truth About Elvis Aron Presley: In His Own Words'. Is there a link or relationship between The Presley Commission and Dr Hinton and what is your view on his claims?
PA: The Commission is also aware of Dr. Hinton's book, and the claims about the individual he feels is Elvis Presley. The Commission has recently learned that DNA testing on the individual did not match known DNA tissue of Elvis. The Commission's position on this matter is not yet determined.
EIN: For people familiar with the various Is Elvis Alive? message boards on the Internet, the whole story and its permutations is bizarre, reminiscent of the machinations and skulduggery of a television soap opera bloodletting, cover-ups, countless accusations and counter accusations, vicious personal attacks, allegations of fraud, involvement of the DEA, claims Jesse Garon Presley did not die at birth but was institutionalised due to mental retardation and so on. The Presley Commission has always projected a professional stance regarding its subject while much of the antics on these message boards is vindictive, malicious and unprofessional. What strategy do Commission members adopt to operate in such a negative environment?
PA: The Presley Commission is not in this to judge people who have their own views and opinions. They only ask that people keep an open mind, and understand the facts. Those that wish to be in on the "dark side" to this story, will relate their experiences, as much as those in the "light:". The Commission associates their success by working with credible people. The message boards do not represent evidence. They are only a sounding board for opinions, right or wrong.
EIN: How active has The Presley Commission been in participating in the online message board debate?
PA: The Commission monitors all activities of discussion and debate when and wherever possible, but is not directly involved in online forums. Our job is to analze, process, and deliberate on factual and verifiable evidence as brought about by 'Operative' reports and other sources.
EIN: While we know the term "Gatheringite" does not apply to members of The Presley Commission can you enlighten us on its genesis and meaning?
PA: The term represents a casual organisation of fans who believe Elvis Is Alive for the most part, and continue discussions in that theatre. They are not part of any official structure of The Presley Commission, but they are people who generally agree with our findings, as I understand it.
EIN: Mary Smiley is a larger-than-life figure on the Internet discussions. What is the relationship, if any, between Ms Smiley and The Presley Commission?
PA: Mrs. Smiley is a self-appointed spokesperson for viewpoints that are not in agreement with The Commission, as a general rule. The Commission does not maintain contact with her, and has closed the file. She had attempted contact with The Commission on a number of occasions.
EIN: Phil, the role/involvement of Ginger Alden on August 16, 1977. Does the Commission have a position on this?
PA: As stated in a number of previously written books, Ms. Alden was Elvis' girlfriend at the time of his "alleged" passing. In whatever the relationship entailed at the time, Ms. Alden is currently married. Her presence in the home at the time of the finding of the body, raises many questions, i.e. what did she do? How did she feel? What was her initial reaction? Was she ever there for any other reason?, and so on.
EIN: It has been reported that one of the Graceland cooks saw Elvis in the mansion, alive, at around 4pm on August 16, 1977. What hard' evidence exists for this claim - what is the cooks name and is there a sworn testimony?
PA:The Commission has no comment at this time.
EIN: it was reported that shortly after Elvis's death was announced, a man looking like him, using the name Jo(h)n Burrows, bought an airline ticket to Buenos Aeries. What 'hard' evidence exists to establish the credibility of this claim?
PA: It is my understanding that the report of this incident was mentioned in Gail's book, 'The Elvis Files', and represents a possible sighting. The Commission is aware of the matter, and currently has some literary reference to it on file in the Commission archives.
EIN: In her book, Elvis Undercover, Gail Brewer-Giorgio published a photo of a person who looked very much like Elvis taken at the Graceland pool house in early 1978. Has the photo been independently examined and if yes, what were the findings?
PA: It is the contention of The Commission to acknowledge the existence of the photo, and that it has been re-examined a number of times. The photo first appeared in The Elvis Files, by Gail Giorgio. It was taken, as I understand it, by Michael Joseph upon visiting Graceland in late 1977. Based on the review of photo enhancements, and other means, The Commission considers the photo to be authentic.
EIN: There are thousands of Elvis impersonators and numerous Elvis look-a-likes. How can anyone be sure the person in the photo is really Elvis Presley?
PA: The best way to ascertain who the individual is in the photo in question, is to realise the importance of Elvis' appearance at that time. The reports of a look-a-like being on the grounds of Graceland at various times was discussed. The Commission could not rule that out. Some interviews conducted with Memphis locals indicated that the man in the picture was Elvis Presley. Some say it was a look-a-like. More importantly, there was a reason he was there
EIN: Our understanding is that The Presley Commission holds the view that Elvis was not affected by drugs and in fact faked his 'strung-out' appearance. What evidence supports this view?
PA: In the matter of Elvis' supposed decaying health, the blame is too often placed on bad habits. There is no physical evidence relating to an addiction to drugs. The medications that were being administered at the time were a combination of pharmaceutical items that were purchased for the two known conditions that Elvis was legitimately being treated for. Glaucoma, and an impacted colon problem had developed. Medications for the Glaucoma condition, are said to have been ordered as well as Testosterone shots as suggested treatment for the impacted colon problem. Contrary to popular belief, Elvis did not have a colostomy. The medications that were ordered to accompany the entourage on tour was for varied legitimate problems that various members of Elvis' entourage required. It is the Commissions' view that polypharmacy did not figure into the equation.
EIN: And why then did Elvis check in to hospital in 1973 and 1975 for alleged drug detoxification?
PA: The reports indicate that he was in for basic testing and rest. We do know there was a 1975 liver biopsy to check for Hepatitus, due to his mother's related condition, and they were generally concerned about it at that time. This tissue would prove to be important in later DNA determinations.
EIN: The element of music in the Elvis Is Alive conspiracy theory is an interesting and diverse one. For instance, the masked singer Orion (the late Jimmy Ellis) was an integral part of the early narrative. What is the Presley Commission's view on the suggestion that that there were, as some fans attending Orion concerts contend, actually two Orion's, one possibly being Elvis Presley?
PA: This matter was covered adequately in The Elvis Files, by Gail Giorgio, and The Presley Report. The Commission is aware of the reports by Orion fans, and currently acknowledges the stories. There is currently no physical evidence to suggest that Elvis and Jimmy were connected, although there are rumours to the effect that they were related, but no official ruling has been brought forth on this.
EIN: The whole Orion conspiracy thing appeared to get out of hand with theorists moving the goalposts beyond the singer Orion, and seeing Elvis connections in films released by the Orion Pictures organisation. To many disbelievers it seemed that all rational thinking had flown out the door and an 'anything goes, conspiracy driven' utopian mentality had taken over. What is your response to this perspective?
PA: The Commission was informed some years back about the "alleged" appearances in movies. Admittedly they do possess a certain air of mystery about such possibilities. More importantly, a recent appearance in another film, "Finding Graceland", was examined. The subject was also discussed extensively in Gail Giorgio's book, 'Elvis Undercover'. Consideration was given to all reports.
EIN: Phil, returning to the music element, Steven Chanzes produced the album 'Sivle Sings Again' by Sivle Nora and later Major Bill Smith's record label released the song 'Spelling On The Grave'. Both became, for a time, important parts of the Elvis Is Alive conspiracy. The singer on both the album and single sounded very much like Elvis but was later revealed on national television to be a sound-a-like by the name of David Darlock. Was the album/song ever part of the Commission's argument, and if so how damaging was the Darlock revelation to the overall Elvis Is Alive movement?
PA: The best I can tell you is that Mr. Darlock was interviewed later, and denied his involvement in the recording of the 'Sivle' album. The matter of Major Bill's single is considered to be Elvis Presley by a number of fans. The Commission concurs with these statements, although maintains a disclaimer on these matters to protect the innocent parties.
EIN: Ralph Thomas, author of 'How To Investigate By Computer 2000', is an investigator who decided to establish whether or not Elvis was alive by performing a Master Death Claims Index Search and Social Security Number (SSN) trace. On the first search Thomas found that Elvis Presley is officially listed as having died on August 16, 1977 and that a lump sum payment was made. Through his SSN trace Thomas found a number of people having Elvis's SSN (409-52-2002), including a Jon Burrows who listed his address as 3797 Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee! Thomas argues that if Elvis didn't die and was placed under the Witness Protection Program he would have a completely new identity, an identity that in no way that could be linked to his previous life. The use of Jon Burrows, an alias many fans know Elvis used during his performing career wouldn't make sense and therefore must be a hoax. Do you or The Commission have a view on this?
PA: Mr. Thomas' assessment is partially correct, in that it wouldn't be likely Elvis would use a name that he used in his previous life, however The Commission contends that there were a number of identities, possibly as many as 10 or 12, and at least three SSN's. No, I would not call the use of the Jon Burrows name a hoax. It was, in fact, a plausible use of identity outside of his entertainment career. Also, as discussed in a previous question, the Witness Protection Program, sponsored by the U.S. Marshalls, is not considered to be the correct program for Elvis' situation. More on this later.
EIN: In their book, 'True Disbelievers: The Presley Contagion', Professors Denisoff and Plasketes contend that believers in the idea Elvis is still alive have significant similarities with those who interact or engage with cult, sect and more mainstream religious movements. In particular they suggest that consistent with the psychological theory of 'cognitive dissonance', believers 'resist' or 'devalue' information that contradicts their internal beliefs. Similarly, a study of music fans published in the late 1970s found that compared to fans of The Beatles, Elvis fans "were more likely" to exhibit the following personality traits: low self esteem, greater need for control and greater use of both rationalisation in making decisions/undertaking daily activities and engaging in cognitive dissonance. What is your view on these suggestions as they could apply to the beliefs of The Presley Commission?
PA: It is not The Commission's position to agree or disagree with the writings of these two authors. Their book is their 'professional' opinions, and are largely based on that, not a consideration of real and factual evidence that pertains directly to Elvis Presley case subject. The fact remains, that the evidence exhibits pertaining to Elvis' situation are real, verifiable, and based on sound research. Any consideration otherwise does not cover the subject of validity, in the Commissions' view.
EIN: Phil, putting it another way, is it possible the whole Elvis Is Alive conspiracy theory is simply a case of several circumstantial strands of evidence being embraced by people with, for whatever reason, a greater than normal need to believe in or hang-on to the memory of Elvis Presley?
PA: No hardlyI believe I have already answered the question.
EIN: Is it a fair comment to say of the theory(ies) of The Presley Commission that it/they are largely conjecture, where a number of the arguments could reasonably have more than one possible answer? For example, the spelling of 'Aaron' may simply be an error made by a member of Elvis's staff during a very emotional time rather than a deliberate mistake.
PA: It is not likely that this is the case, however there are many questions that have been asked that could take on the appearance of having more than one possible answer. That is what makes it a question. The Presley Commission continues to work on the prospect of Elvis being alive because there are many of the questions that have singular answers, that ultimately satisfy the curiosity of the public interest. Our mission has been to try and sort it all out.
EIN: Some parties have alleged that the Elvis Is Alive Museum you own with Bill Beeny in Missouri is funded by Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE) and that EPE has also been behind other parts of the Elvis Is Alive movement including funding the publication of at least one of Gail Brewer-Giorgio's books. The implication being that EPE is actually a major player in the Elvis Is Alive conspiracy, albeit for reasons tied to generating greater profits. What is your response to these suggestions?
PA: Firstly, let me correct your assumption that I am an owner of the Elvis Is Alive Museum in Missouri with Bill Beeny. I am not, nor ever have been an owner jointly or otherwise with Mr. Beeny in the museum. Bill Beeny is a respected friend and colleague. His own work and individual efforts to sort out the details of the Elvis matter were acknowledged by The Commission. EPE, to my knowledge is not a financier of the museum, nor The Commission's efforts. They are also not a financier of the works of Gail Giorgio or any of her constituents. Any public indications of this are fraudulent, and inaccurate.
EIN: As EIN understands it, presently the key element in the whole issue revolves around the issue of DNA. Our understanding is that in The Commission obtained a tissue sample from a biopsy Elvis had in the 1970s and that the DNA is different to DNA obtained from Elvis's 1977 autopsy. The issue is further complicated as a DNA sample from the person known as Jesse (aka Elvis) in Dr Hinton's story is different yet again. Can you provide us with the history and current status of this critical issue.
PA: Again let me clarify that The Commission was not responsible for obtaining the tissue samples from Elvis' archives file. The tissues were obtained at the direction of the attorney conducting a DNA check on a young lady claiming to be a sibling of Elvis'. The DNA for the young lady failed to match the known tissue samples from 1973 and 1975. The tissue sample from 1975 was taken to check for Hepatitus, a condition that Elvis was concerned about, due to heredity implications. The 1975 tissue, as I understand it failed to also match a sample taken from the Autopsy tissue from 1977. An independent back up test was conducted by a major news agency, and the results turned out the same. The autopsy tissue purportedly Elvis' did not match the known tissue from the 1975 sample. This summarily proves that the person autopsied was not Elvis Presley, since it is probable that the '75 tissue does in fact belong to him.
EIN: Phil, the Presley Commission has previously declined to say how it obtained the tissue samples facilitating the DNA test. Critics argue that this is consistent with other structural and operational flaws in the whole Is Elvis Alive? argument. No 'hard' evidence, that would stand up in a court of law, is provided, only conjecture and circumstantial, alleged, vague and/or unsubstantiated evidence. Are you able to tell us how you did obtain the tissue samples?
PA: Those who allegedly claim the descriptive terms used to explain flaws in the system, fail to understand fully the importance of conducting verifiable and sound research. The fact is, the majority of information that is publicly available about Elvis Presley's alleged death in 1977 is largely flawed in the explanation by the media and others. As far as the tissue samples, I believe I have already answered that part of your question.
EIN: Reports on the DNA findings received media covered in the first half of 1997. That coverage indicated that The Presley Commission received from an unnamed DNA laboratory on the East Coast a "written 18 page report on two slides of tissue". Are you able to now tell us the name of the DNA laboratory?
PA: Again you have been misinformed. The Commission didn't order up the tissue samples, and is not commenting on having received a report. We were consulted, and were informed of the results. The name of the Lab is not information that we are entitled to release. Anyone who read the book by Bill Beeny, entitled "DNA Proves That Elvis Is Alive", knows the story about how the test was handled.
EIN: The DNA report. When will it be released?
PA: A narrative of logistical information, and pages from the results are explained in the book I just mentioned in my previous answer. Bill Beeny may be contacted to reference any materials pertinent to that issue.
EIN: Even if the DNA report indicates the sample is that of Elvis Presley, that doesn't prove he is still alive. Scientists continue to obtain DNA from mummy bones in Egypt. So how will the DNA report help your case?
PA: A multitude of medical personnel around the world all agree that DNA testing is one of the final steps in determining who is who. Its identification process is verifiable, and in fact marks the end of most arguments. It also represents a "smoking gun" in the Presley case where so many items cast doubt on the credibility of the death report as a whole. The Commission completely concurs with those DNA findings that are known to be true samples belonging to the subject. The Commission also concurs that the death did not occur as reported. The issue of Elvis being alive today is a whole other aspect of the scenario.
EIN: Are there other key issues The Presley Commission is still investigating?
PA: In as much as our preference to have this great historical controversy reach its end, there are a great many issues still unresolved. Some of these include the very detailed work involved with the constitutionality of Federal and State statutes with regard to Public Health Records, and awaiting a response from the Attorney General's office to re-open files. In addition, smaller issues are still being examined, too many to mention here.
EIN: Apart from the DNA issue, how else can The Presley Commission obtain widespread credibility?
PA: The Commission will maintain its credibility by continuing to address issues as they become known, and hopefully will be able to educate the public ongoing. The individuals who are largely critical of The Commission's work are those that have been left out of the loop, so to speak. Preserving the security and safety of our subject has always been a matter of policy, and other directives to continue a professional and positive outlook on the life and times of Elvis Presley. Whatever the answer, The Presley Commission will be there.
EIN: Phil, I understand you are currently working on a book regarding your work with The Presley Commission. When can we expect to see it published and what will be its primary objective(s)?
PA: It is my hope that the book will be out in the next year. The only delay might be caused by the circumstances overseas i.e. the war and so on. It will be a direct and different approach to anything published so far on this subject. In addition, I am writing two other books about other subjects, so you can imagine, my time is limited. I also work a full time job, and run two businesses.
EIN: How can people interested in the work of The Presley Commission contact you?
PA: The Commission Liaison office is in Virginia. Folks may write to me at the following address: The Presley Commission, Liaison Office, P.O. Box 752, Hardy, Virginia, 24101, USA.
EIN: On behalf of EIN and our readers thank you again for talking to us on an intriguing subject that some believe, some don't, and one that simply won't go away.
PA: Thanks for the opportunity to talk with you and your readers today. I sincerely hope that in whatever you folks believe, Elvis Presley was/is a bright star in the universe. He is a man with great love for his country and his fans. In whatever the truth, rest assured it will be told, and it is quite probable that we will be seeing him again.
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