PRIVATE ELVIS PRESLEY   Parenthesis  GERMANY 1958/1960


                                                                              ELVIS PRESLEY



The beginning of a hiatus in the life of Elvis Presley
Military service.

On March 24, 1958
  Elvis Presley had to appear before the draft board where he will meet with twelve other recruits to transfer them to the bus that will take them to the Kennedy Veterans Memorial Hospital. To say goodbye to him, Anita Wood, his girlfriend at the time and his parents along with some friends, accompanied him. There was also Colonel Parker who was advertising the movie Elvis had made, handing out "King Creole" balloons to the people who had come to see Elvis.
After a physical exam they would take the army bus to Fort Chaffee, Arkansas.
Along the way, Elvis meets Rex Mansfield, from Dresden, Tennessee, who will become one of his closest friends in the army.
On this day, they cut their hair in the traditional way in front of reporters and photographers, who were evidently there to take note of everything that was happening and because it was great news. Elvis makes a silly comment because he can't say anything else... "Hair today, the day after tomorrow"
He is assigned to the 2nd Armored Division, General Patton's "Hell on Wheels" team, stationed at Fort Hood, Killeen, Texas. On the 28th he begins his training that will last six months before being sent to Germany.
What for any young man like Elvis would be private, for poor Elvis was a kind of circus around him, who kept taking photos and taking notes of how he undressed, they did tests on him, cut his hair and swore before the flag. Obviously, if he already had confusion, all this, although it was publicity to keep his public informed, for Elvis it would be one more nuisance and even a little humiliating, since it was no longer a movie or a performance, but his own life.

All this would mean for Elvis a radical change of situation and of course of customs in his usual life. What would be normal for a young man who has to do military service would be harder for him, because he was giving up his success at the top, despite those who still did not accept him, because he had won over his audience, which was majority and left everything behind for two years that would come with doubts and uncertainty.
Elvis Presley had not accepted any different treatment nor did he want favoritism, because he only expected to be one more like the other soldiers.
However, RCA and Steve Sholes, its producer, were restless and really worried because it would be difficult from now on to release new material, unless they took advantage of some permission from Elvis, to be able to record.
They had published a few days before a new LP that brought together fourteen songs, the most successful of Elvis so far, "Elvis'Golden Records". It was unknown to everyone what was going to happen in the absence of his most important artist and there was much confusion. But the intention was to have the public entertained with already known material and with the new Elvis film.
It was a hiatus in Elvis's life that could take its toll on his career as an artist, since two years was a long time away in between. Anything could happen...
"Following the Path of the King..."

Private Presley
From Tupelo to Memphis

Fort Hood, Texas. April, May 1958
In moments of our life, situations that we have already experienced are repeated, that we have already enjoyed or suffered and that we will have to relive in a different way but with the same background. Somehow they are circumstances that we can attract by our way of being and by the way we respond.
Although Elvis had it all in 1958, he was a famous, rich and attractive artist that fans would give everything to see him, at this time, he found himself in an unknown and a little hostile environment. Among young people who, like him, had to do the same daily military training and offer the best of themselves as men and soldiers for the pride of his nation.
Elvis was not entirely happy, rather he felt isolated, again that hostility of boys who made fun of him was repeated, in the same way they did in high school, the reason was clear: Envy. They would say things like "boy, don't you move well", or "don't you miss your teddy bears, Elvis?" Although they weren't offensive, the truth is that they created a real insecurity for a sensitive person like Elvis, because what he wanted was to integrate as one more. Being accepted by the group was an internal struggle that some of his colleagues could perceive, who would become friends, such as Rex Mansfield, whom he met on the first day of enlistment.
Also his recruiting drill sergeant Bill Norwood, would realize this, would also become friends with Elvis and even allowed him to make personal calls from his house, since he saw a lot of sadness in him.
He told her that in his house he could do whatever he wanted, but when he went outside, he had to be the actor, that he is strong, that he doesn't let anyone know how he felt inside, that was good advice. .
As a soldier, Elvis immediately obtained the rifle marksman's medal, the first marksman's medal with a pistol and for this reason he would be assigned as head of the platoon, just like his friend Rex's. Over time they came to accept him as one more and he integrated without any further effort, but Elvis was always suspicious and of course nothing would change in this in these times.

Colonel Parker went to see him a couple of times to give him news on how the publications were going, also to get him to sign some papers and above all to explain to him what they were going to do in his absence. Elvis would be calmer, but despite everything he felt very alone.
In mid-May, Elvis would receive a visit from Eddy Fadal, whom he had met in 1956 on a tour he did through Texas. Elvis performed concerts at Waco's Heart O' Texas Coliseum during those years and each time visited Fadal's home before and after his concerts. At Elvis's invitation, Eddie accompanied him on several tours during those days, but only as a trusted friend and traveling companion, not working for him.
When he saw him it was as if he were visiting an old friend, but the reality is that he would become one.
Elvis has become more closely acquainted with Eddie Fadal and Eddie Fadal invited him to his house and during weekend visits, Anita Wood and Elvis stay at Fadal's house. They sing, they laugh with Eddie and his family who receive them with affection and closeness, home recordings were even made of these occasions in which Elvis and Anita could sing together "I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love with You)" by Hank Williams and Anita sampling the new "Who's Sorry Now" by Connie Francis.
At Eddie's house, Elvis would feel like family and intimacy, he ate homemade food, which is why it was like his family to him.
Rex Mansfield was also a good friend at this time, Elvis invited him to Graceland on leave at the end of May and again there he would feel at home in his own home and with his friends and family.
Elvis would see a special screening of the film "King Creole" with his parents, he would get a haircut at Jim's and he would buy a red convertible car, the Lincoln Copntinental.
Private Presley still had a lot to offer.
"Following the Path of the King..."

"The loss of the most loved one" Gladys Love Presley

 Elvis followed his instruction as a soldier in the service of his homeland, 5 months had passed and he knew that he would have to move to Germany.
 Gladys, her mother was very depressed with the absence of her son.
 It was such a great union between mother and son, that these changes were very hard for both of them.
 Ever since Gladys had her new house, Graceland, with the fame of Elvis, her life was completely turned upside down by money and appearances. She really didn't like her new life and even less the removal of her son from her with which she never cut her umbilical cord.
 Elvis and his mother adored each other and an early and final separation would never have been thought of.
 But unfortunately on August 14, 1958 Gladys passed away.
 She had already been admitted to the hospital where her condition was considered serious.
 Elvis had to ask permission to go see her, which would cost a lot of effort, threatening to leave if they didn't grant it. But he was finally able to see her mother, even though she was already on her last legs.
 On August 14, Gladys Love Presley died at the age of 46 of irreversible liver failure, with her husband by her side.
 Elvis was left devastated and inconsolable.

 Funeral service was held at The Memphis Funeral Home, on the 15th.
 Elvis did not stop crying, he was in pain and at the side of his mother's grave he said: "Oh, God, everything I have is gone. life only for you"

 And it was true, no woman would become as great as his mother, his best friend and the only one who supported him unconditionally.
 Elvis would search over and over again in the woman, that great feeling, that understanding and complicity of her, but despite so many opportunities he never found her.
 The ideal of her love was as high as the love for her mother and her music.
 "Following The Path of the King..."


1958 - 1960

Elvis Presley in GERMANY.

On October 1, 1958, Elvis arrives in Bremerhaven, Germany to stay for 18 months during his military service.
Elvis would be away from the media, officially for almost two years of his life. Colonel Parker's maneuver, his manager, was to try to clean up his image as an artist, at a time of absolute success and fame. A moment that was very important in his career because he was being reciprocated by his fans... the other, more mature audience criticized him and questioned his music, his movements, his appearance.
Everything was strange and contradictory, but the truth is that Elvis's artistic life was put on hold for two years... We will never know if this was really necessary, so soon or if another solution could have been found.
But the truth is that Elvis Presley arrived as the greatest artist and also returned to Memphis in March 1960. His image before the most conservative public was already closer and different, he had earned everyone's sympathy by serving his country like any young American.
His life changed radically as a result of these circumstances and where he settled from October 4 in the town of Bad Nauheim, where he would live with certain privileges unlike the rest of the soldiers. In September 1959 he would meet the 14-year-old girl he would later marry, Priscilla Beaulieu.

Germany 1958. Away from the madding crowd.

For a normal boy, military service was an obligation that took him away from his family, his environment, putting his life aside and learning to defend his homeland. For Elvis Presley it was even harder, because he was leaving success behind, in full euphoria about his artistic career, his opportunity as an actor and the recent loss of his mother.
Elvis must still be devastated by his passing, but he still had the strength to smile at his fans.

On October 1, 1958 Elvis arrives in Bremerhaven, Germany on the USS General Randall, to stay for 18 months during his military service. There in the port the press and his fans were waiting for him to receive him with open arms.

He then moved by train to Friedberg in Hesse where he is going to do his military service. It is important to know that Elvis would be away from the media for almost two years of his life. The uncertainty and the feeling of stepping on shaky ground could be what he had at the moment.

Elvis stayed for three days at the Hotel Hilbert's Park located at Terrassenstraße 10, 61231 Bad Nauheim.
In it he was staying
an Arab sheikh and his entourage, ornately dressed in robes. All this was annoying because there was a double attraction for journalists in the hotel, so he decided to move to another hotel.

The Hotel Grünewald was a building built in the 19th century. A luxurious and comfortable hotel at the time, in the center of a very quiet town. Where there were middle-aged guests, many visitors to the spa, so they were not entirely comfortable either.
He was accompanied by Red West and Lamar Fike, apart from his father, his grandmother Minnie and the rest of the company. Elvis had four spacious rooms with his private bathroom.
One to share and also a room on the ground floor to be able to manage Vernon or for his correspondence with his secretary Elisabeth Stefaniak who received his correspondence, fan mail, etc.

Red West described the Grünewald as "sort of an outpatient hotel, for heart attack victims." His impression of the other residents was that they all "seemed to have one foot in the grave and the other on a skid".

How Elvis was very special in his meals so the hotel was ordered to cook his favorite dishes to order, such as burnt bacon, fried eggs, chili without beans and tenderloin, or toasted peanut butter sandwiches and banana etc
There was also an agreement to avoid harassment by the public and the press.
Once settled, he wanted to forget about everything and have the best time possible.

In this hotel he would only stay for four months until he moved to Goethestraße 14 in Bad Nauheim, where he lived until the end of his military service.
The reason why they had to leave the hotel was because of their somewhat different customs, noisy and so on.
The truth is that they had parties, they invited people, music... and this was too much for a hotel of these characteristics.
  They politely asked them to leave the hotel, to which Elvis couldn't say anything.
It was difficult to be a man, a soldier and a star at the same time...

"Following the Path of the King..."


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Ray Barracks. Friedberg 

October 1958

Ray Barracks in the town of Friedberg, Hesse in Germany would be the place where Elvis performed his military service. It was a United States Army facility in Friedberg, Germany, until it was closed by the United States government in 2007 and returned to the German government. Elvis began his military service in March 1958. On March 24, he traveled to Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, where he had his hair cut and was chased by cameras at all times. After three days, Elvis Presley was sent to Fort Hood, Texas to complete your basic training. There he would meet one of his most faithful friends who followed him by his side until the end of his days, Charlie Hodge. 
During his service as a soldier, his mother Gladys dies on August 14, leaving her son devastated. The bond he had with her was so special that he leaves an irreplaceable void in her life. She finally moved him to Germany in October 1958, to keep him away from the media. Although Elvis would enjoy a certain peace of mind without being so harassed by journalists, in Bad Nauheim he would also have the company of his inevitable fans. As a soldier, he showed himself that he could do many things with total efficiency despite being a famous artist and his colleagues saw him as one of the others. 
When he was a rank officer, the temperature, the environment, made it difficult to adapt to carry out his maneuvers. But Elvis was a strong and determined man and like him he always gave himself body and soul to follow his instructions. It was hard to leave the success of his fans to find himself with a job completely different from his normal life. There Elvis Presley got used to taking pills to stay steady and awake during his obligations. A habit that unfortunately he did not leave after returning to his normal life and later would mark his path over time. 
An addiction and serious damage to his person, both physically and mentally. His stay lasted eighteen months until March 1960 when he would return to Memphis.

Hotel Grünewald. Bad Nauheim.

Located at Terrassenstraße 10, 61231 Bad Nauheim, Germany

The first hotel where Elvis stayed in Germany, during his military service, would be at the Hilbert's Park Hotel in October 1958. But they would only stay in this place for two or three days due to the presence of some exotic foreigners.
For Elvis and his entourage It must have been very disconcerting. The arrival of an Arab sheikh and his retinue, ornately dressed in robes, also aroused the intense curiosity of the city's insular bourgeois citizens, who found them much more intriguing than an ordinary American singer and his retinue.
Certainly, Elvis found the presence of the Sheikh and his entourage somewhat annoying. He found it even more annoying to be chased by reporters and photographers with the sheik, who attracted so much attention.
What Elvis wanted was to be quiet, so he decided to move to another Hotel. He moved to the Hotel Grünewald, located at 10 Terrassenstrasse, Bad Nauheim , on October 11, 1958.
Building built in the 19th century. A luxurious and comfortable hotel, in the center of a very quiet town. To this day, the hotel has been preserved, enjoying a preservation order that until now covers the antique furniture, crystal chandeliers and luxurious decoration of that time. The impression that Elvis had, in terms of guests, was of being elderly people visiting the spa town; compared to Elvis and his entourage, who seemed quite out of place, and there is little doubt that they felt uncomfortable there.
Red West described the Grünewald as "a kind of outpatient hotel, for heart attack victims". His impression of the other residents was that they all "seemed to have one foot in the grave and the other on a skate". Even with this, Elvis rented four spacious rooms, all with en-suite bathrooms, for himself, his father, his grandmother Minnie and the rest of his people.
One for Red West and Lamar Fike to share. He also had a room below with his secretary Elisabeth Stefaniak who received his correspondence, fan letters, etc. The press was very heavy, even reporting that he did not wear pajamas, but slept in clothes interior. The hotel served him special meals, it was a personal agreement they reached, so that they would not be harassed by people.
They cooked his favorite dishes to order, such as burnt bacon, fried eggs, chili without beans and tenderloin, or toasted peanut butter and banana sandwiches, etc. He would only stay in this hotel for four months until he moved to Goethestraße 14 in Bad Nauheim, where he lived until the end of his military service.
The reason they had to leave the hotel was because of their somewhat different habits, noisy and so on. They politely asked them to leave the hotel, to which Elvis could not say anything. It was difficult to be a man, a soldier and a star at the same time...

"Following the Path of the King..."


Goethestraße 14
Bad Nauheim

Elvis in Bad Nauheim After living for four months in the Grunewald Hotel, he moved to the house located in

Goethestraße 14 where he would live until the end of his military service. He lived there from 02/03/1959 to 03/02/1960. to greet their fans. His fans told many stories about Elvis's life in Bad Nauheim at Goethestrasse 14, from which we can conclude that he must have been very happy there. Despite the radical change of life that being a world famous star meant whole to be a soldier... but his approach with his fans was daily and sincere. He left the house every night to sign autographs, since his fans came to see him every day. It was only when he was on maneuvers that he could not have this habit. He also rode from time to time and they said that he joked around with the girls, he was very natural and approachable. He was sometimes seen buying records... and on Sundays he used to play soccer in a field near his house, with his friends. He was also seen riding his bike down Parkstrasse, even getting to know the older people of the place who changed his defensive opinion about this young man they initially didn't like. Everyone saw the boy from Tupelo in him, as his art world was so far away. The confusion in Elvis was very great but he knew how to adapt to his new change, the army and also to his new house where he had fun having parties, meetings and shared his moments with his new friends. . Those who knew him then say that he was shy, gentle and very different from what he seemed in his movies. The house where Elvis lived was very simple, simple furniture, like any normal house in the style of the time... nothing to do with his beloved Graceland. The fans were also present in his life, but in a more friendly and Calm, without hysteria or assaults. Elvis also took his time talking to his fans, so they were all delighted. The truth is that although Elvis was happy at this time, he also still carried the weight of pain due to the loss of his mother and the confusion of not knowing what would happen to his artistic future that gave him a certain insecurity. But everything was controlled by his manager, Colonel Parker, who was very clear about how to manage the record world and from time to time released Elvis hits to keep his figure on the rise until he returned from Germany. In this way he would keep the artist, although away from the scene, very present without falling into oblivion... it would be a success despite having distanced him from his public. When Elvis came back to Memphis, everything changed... his musical style, his initiation into a series of movies with no quality, his songs weren't that good anymore. Other types of scores were accepted and adapted to these films, without too many pretensions. A radical change that would plunge Elvis Presley into a wheel with no way out... years away from the stage, from TV... and the feeling of losing all hope, not becoming the long-awaited actor, the recognized singer. The years of interpretation until 1968 in which a definitive change would finally be considered with his return to television. The two years of military service from March 1958 to 1960 were a parenthesis with a very high price in the life of an artist who he was on top, changing the course of his career forever...

The beginning of a great friendship.
Elvis and Charlie.1958-1977

Of all the friends Elvis would have, Charlie Hodge would be someone very special because of everything he got to share with him. The most important thing: the music.

Elvis Presley and Charlie Hodge became friends during their military service in 1958.
Charlie Hodge, like Elvis, was a singer and began his musical career at age 20 in a gospel quartet with Bill Gaither. He later went on to be the lead singer of the Foggy River Boys.
Elvis saw him perform many times before becoming friends with him.
Elvis met Charlie backstage after the group performed in Memphis, Tennessee, just before we were both recruited.
Both had many things in common, music was always the most important. They both wanted to be part of a Gospel quartet. Also his musical tastes, for this reason Elvis always took into account Charlie's opinion, to sing choose songs.

They would see each other again at Fort Hood, although they were not destined in the same way.
On the train from Fort Hood to New Jersey, they sat together and talked. And that's where their friendship started just by talking about people they knew in the art field.
Elvis told Charlie that he used to watch him on TV on Saturday nights.
They both left on the same boat for Europe and talked about their favorite musicians and songs, it would be something that would unite them naturally.
They sang together on the way to Germany and Charlie even gave Elvis some advice to help him with his singing. Over time Charlie taught him vocal techniques. Since Charlie was already a professional musician and sang with a quartet, Elvis wanted to open other paths and vocal techniques and was curious.

Once in Germany they saw each other from time to time, also George Klein and some of the boys who went to visit him.
Elvis told Charlie that he could find him just by reading the newspaper.
They weren't stationed in the same boot camp but Charlie, like Elvis, needed someone to join him and remind him of his musical world. That's why he looked for him with the news and went to see him.
When he called from the front desk of the first hotel where Elvis was staying, he called Lamar Fike.
on the phone. And he said, 'Hello, is Elvis there? I'm Charlie Hodge.' And Lamar Fike Said, "Charlie Hodge?" And he heard Elvis yell, 'Yeah, Charlie, come on up.' And that's how they got together after arriving in Germany.
Then, every weekend, almost the entire time they were in Germany, he already visited him at his house.

There in his rented house she had more or less a family life. At first they had parties and played with a guitar. Elvis got hold of a piano and it became more fun to sing together on weekends.

On Sundays Elvis wanted to go play soccer. And with them were a lot of guys, although Charlie never played because he wasn't into it.
Joe Esposito was Charlie's bunkmate and also went there to play and joined Elvis' group.
Charlie and Elvis used to sing a duet called 'I Will Be Home Again' which was from an old Golden Gate spiritual album. And they started singing that in Germany.

Charlie and Elvis met Priscilla Beaulieu the same night.
When she left that night when she was there, Elvis looked at her and said, 'Charlie, did you see the structure of her face?' He said: 'She's like almost everything I've looked for in a woman.' He was captivated by that fourteen year old girl.
He walked over and said, 'Hi, I'm Elvis Presley.' That's how simple Elvis was.
"Following the Path of the King..."

The other Brigitte. Elvis in Germany

When Elvis was in Germany he would meet many women before settling on Priscilla Beaulieu, whom he would date and also have a fun-filled time in Paris. When Elvis gave a press conference on September 28, 1958 in Brooklyn, one of the journalists asked him what he would most like to do on his first leave in Europe. Elvis told him "I would like to go to Paris and meet Brigitte Bardot", this caused some journalist to laugh.
When Brigitte Bardot would respond to her comment through the press and she said that she was not interested in meeting Elvis, because she said that he was not "refined". It would surely be a disappointment to him, since he always had great admiration for the actress and when he answered this Elvis would say: "Everyone quoted me saying that I wanted to date her. That's not what I said. I only made the statement that I admire her and would like to meet her. There are many people I admire and would like to meet."
The truth is that everything he said or did was the result of a comment, good or bad, but Elvis was still the news wherever he went.

A German photographer who worked for Stern magazine, made Elvis a proposal to take exclusive photos on October 5, 1958. Elvis had to leave the Ritters Park Hotel and take a walk in the park. A sixteen-year-old girl named Margit Buergin was intentionally taken by the photographer to meet Elvis and also to accompany him on this walk that was surrounded by fans. The girl had a certain resemblance to B.Bardot and Elvis liked her very much, he was asked to kiss her for the photographs and Elvis asked Margit for permission that she would logically be charmed by her idol. These photographs would be published in Germany and from then on Margit would be known.
Elvis liked the young woman and he showed great interest in wanting to see her again, three weeks later they would start dating her. Although Elvis didn't really understand German yet and she didn't speak English, they would start seeing each other several times a week and they had to have a dictionary handy. They spent the afternoons listening to records, Elvis also played the piano and sang well-known songs. Margit thought he was a shy, modest boy and she also liked how he played the piano.
It was clear that this news of the affair with a German girl would reach the American newspapers. The photos were published in a story titled "Kised by Elvis" in November 1958.
The funny thing is that little Margit became very popular and she had the same attention from the press, they called her "Elvis Fraulein".
It appears that Elvis gave Margit the nickname "Little Puppy", although Margit's mother said her nickname was "Honey". Really "Honey" was something habitual that Elvis said to all women but not as a nickname. When she wrote to her friends he told them that he was seeing a German girl who looked like B.B.

It must be borne in mind that Elvis was dating Anita Wood, with whom he had been with for a long time and despite the distance from her he kept her as a couple. To explain this, Elvis wrote to him in a letter dated November 14, 1958, which was something else. He told her that the girl was a photo model and that she was brought by the journalist for publicity. He that he had seen her once since then. He also explained that he didn't speak a word of English and that he hadn't been dating her.
Elvis stopped being the innocent and good boy, who had left Memphis, beginning to have the habit of dating two or more people at the same time.
"Following the Path of the King..."

BMW 507 Roadster

Elvis bought the Bmw 507 Roadster, which was one of the most famous and beautiful models of the German brand, in December 1958. It was a car that had already belonged to the racing driver Hans Stuck with which he would come to victory in several races. mountain. Elvis changed the original engine for a series-produced light-alloy V8 engine, with around 150 hp. This was unusual for the time. 

The car was originally white and spectacular, with a modern design but at the request of Elvis the color would also be changed.

The only thing that really harmed this new car would be the lipsticks of his fans, with which they wrote their messages in that white color, for this reason he decided to change its color to red so that even if they left their kisses with lipstick, at unless it was confused with the color of the car.

  It was an exclusive car due to its high price, it only had 252 buyers in the period from 1957 to 1959. The car went with Elvis back home in 1960, but was later sold although there was no great reason. Possibly Elvis would not give it the same utility and decided to sell it. The truth is that in Bad Nauheim, this car would give him a lot of freedom of action, but it was a car that attracted a lot of attention in a simple and modest place.

"Two men and one true love"

Elvis, Rex and Elizabeth. 1958. Germany.
Rex Mansfield met Elvis on March 24, 1958 when they both entered the army for their military training, both became good friends from the beginning, they sympathized and Elvis also realized that Rex was a good and generous companion. Elvis once asked Rex to change a guard because his girlfriend Anita Wood was going to visit him, he offered him a large amount of money but Rex told him that it was not necessary to give him anything, because they were partners and what one day one did, another day could do the other.
Rex was very fond of him and would share good times with Elvis and would even travel to Paris with him, during a leave in which they had a great time. Elvis always wanted to have him close, since during the service neither Lamar Fike nor Red West could be with him and he was somehow protected by this new friend he trusted.
In an interview Rex was asked what he thought of Elvis and he said: "He was an honest, personal, kind, terrific man, he had a great sense of humor, courteous, pleasant and funny, as well as being the best and most loyal patriot." He loved his country above all else." But of his negative traits, he said: "He was selfish, he needed his ego constantly fed, he was suspicious of everyone, jealous and very possessive of those around him."
He really got to know him well and witnessed his grief when his mother passed away and the great positive influence meeting Charlie Hodge had with whom they sang, laughed etc. When Elvis left the military service, he asked Rexus, as he called him, to go with him to work for him as a bodyguard, when they returned to his city. Their friendship was sincere and loyal, but there was something they both never counted on, they never would have thought that a woman could stand in their way and separate them.

When Elvis met a girl, he had very clear rules for her friends, no one could get close to her and it was forbidden to touch her, it was forbidden matter. All of them always respected this rule. But this was not that way, but something very different.

During his stay in Germany Elvis still had a girlfriend, Anita Wood, but he would meet many women with whom he would maintain short-term relationships.
Although of these girls there was one that was more important, since he made her her secretary for almost 18 months and took her to Bad Nauheim. He would go out with her for a while and he wanted her to work for him, so he actually worked with her father Vernos from her, with the fan mail and for the German language, to help handle the correspondence.
Her name was Elizabeth Stefaniak and she was a fan like so many who wanted to see her in person. Elvis had met another soldier named Johnny Lange and with Rex, they always went to the movies together. One day and another they noticed a beautiful young woman who always waited in the lobby with the idea of being able to see Elvis and she came up to ask Johnny if she would give her an autograph from Elvis. When Johnny told Elvis, he sent for her and it was her Rex who went to her for her.
Rex told him "Elvis would like to meet you." Then he could tell from Elizabeth's expression that he couldn't believe this was happening.
Elvis started seeing her and going out with her and then he made her a job proposal, she accepted it, but over time she realized that she was not the only one and even when he met Priscilla, he confirmed that she was nobody to Elvis .

But she really loved him and she allowed things to continue like this, because she was very involved in Elvis's life. Minnie Mae the grandmother, she loved her very much, she had welcomed her into her house as if she were family, she did not like how Elvis was treating her when Priscilla came into his life.
Rex knew that he couldn't get close to her, but he really fell in love little by little with Elizabeth, but he knew that she wouldn't listen to her until that relationship ended.
Grandma Minnie Mae suggested to Elizabeth that she was a good girl and that she should date a good boy, making it clear that her grandson was clearly not taking her seriously. She would think a lot about this comment, because she tried to stop thinking about him and think more about herself.
When she finished her military service and returned to America, she and Rex began dating, because she no longer had anything to do with Elvis, although she still loved him, she trusted Rex's love and loyalty and fell in love with him.
They decided to get married and invited Elvis to his wedding in March 1960, but she did not go. It was evident that Elvis considered Elizabeth her property and he did not accept this relationship, regardless of the fact that he did not love her, he did not accept the situation.
This would break a friendship between the three, since Elvis would never see them again.
"Following the Path of the King..."

Places to Remember on the Elvis Trail

Castle Gate, Bad Nauheim

Castle Gate, Bad Nauheim. Germany 1958The castle gate in the old town of Bad Nauheim. This place is particularly remembered for some photographs that were taken for advertising and commercial reasons. The photograph of Elvis was made to publish the cover of one of his new albums, the single "A Big Hunk O' Love", Elvis won a gold record in 1959. The cover photo was taken at the Puerta del Castle in Bad Nauheim

The path of bad habits

Although Elvis was a good boy, a healthy person who had no major vices, he was just a young man like everyone else, he was just rich and famous.
Really, when you have money, many things can be achieved if you are interested in acquiring something that is prohibited or that cannot be consumed. When Elvis did his military service in 1958 he would start an unhealthy habit that would lead to worse ones over time. The point was that Elvis wouldn't have needed to take pills to get past guards or to do anything else, since his teammates didn't take them. But someone told him that by consuming a few pills he could last up to 24 hours without eating, sleep, and he would feel strong and energized for everything. Unfortunately Elvis became convinced that he needed these amphetamines and would start using them.

Rex Mandsfield says that Elvis was already taking amphetamines during his military training, he said that they kept him awake strong and also controlled his weight. In addition, he convinced him to try them, claiming that Alan Fortas and Red West had also tried them and that they did not have any bad effect but rather made better use of the day. Rex also tried them and he would say that they took one at the beginning, but little by little they changed the routine. They continued to take two pills regularly on Friday morning, then they also added two pills at night, the same on Saturday, depending on whether they had to do one thing or another, they took it or left it for the new week. Rex noticed that he lost weight without doing anything new, plus they felt energized and this would eventually lead to a vicious circle.
Vernon, Elvis's father, knew that Elvis was taking these pills and even tried them on occasion, but he did not get hooked on them, although Elvis convinced everyone that they were harmless.
In addition, he always kept a few bottles with pills to give to others, someone supplied him.
Elvis really owned his Way, but he would start to make the wrong choice, because from then on he would never stop taking drugs. However, many of his friends who would share this hobby stopped taking these pills because they saw that this went further and they chose to stop using.
Part of this addition that Elvis had would be due to that insecurity that was part of his way of being and that he could never overcome. But this was the beginning of another story...
"Following the Path of the King..."


Elvis and the City of Love
Paris. June 1959

Elvis wanted to visit Paris and decided to go by train with his three friends Charlie Hodge, Rex Mansfield and Lamar Fike. On June 1 they had named him Corporal and he asked for a permit to see the city of love. When they arrived on June 16 at the Gare de L'Est in Paris. They arrived at dawn when it was still dark and at the station they were received by Freddy Bienstock who was always in charge of finding songs for Elvis, he was the manager of Hill and Range Music Editions, with his cousin Jean Aberback Co-Director. They went to the highest part of the city so that Elvis could see the sunrise enjoying the Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Sacre Coeur, etc. Elvis was delighted with the views of the city, saying that everything was beautiful and that there had never been anything like it in Tupelo. Freddy had booked him a Suite at the Prince de Galles Hotel, 33 Avenue George V, a short distance from the Arc de Triomphe. . More than a Hotel it was a palace, one of the most luxurious Hotels in the city. After settling in the Elvis Rooms with his friends, they left the hotel walking towards the Champs-Élysées, the main avenue in Paris, thinking that they would not have any problem with people, since Freddy assured that they could go unnoticed. But for a young man like Elvis so attractive and dressed as a military man, so elegant, it would be impossible for him to go unnoticed anywhere. At first Elvis noticed the windows and stopped at Barclay's, known for his chic clothes, next to the Hotel. A photographer appears who took a picture of him in the window, then walking along the Champs Elysées Elvis stops at the Elysée-Cinéma, the Biarritz Cinema, etc.
Then he begins to gather people who have already recognized him and surround them. Elvis although he was delighted to have moments of tranquility and to have spent a bit of time without crowds, as always he had to sign and take photos with his fans and be able to continue his route to Claridge's palace where the Capone movie was being shown, again with people around. Once they reach the avenue square in front of the Mimi Pinson Ballroom, Elvis sits at a table in the Café de Paris. He seemed to be delighted with the ride when he was approached by a black shoeshine boy with whom he exchanged a few joking words. Again the crowd is around but in a calm way without hysterics, so it must have felt very different there. Later they arrive at the terrace of the most famous Café-restaurant in the city, Le Fouquet's, there they take more pictures of him and the crowd returns. Finally they decide to return to the Hotel to rest.

The news that Elvis was in Paris had already gone to the press, which published: Elvis Presley on leave in Paris. Freddy Bienstock had organized a Press Conference at the Hotel, which Elvis was not amused by, because the purpose of the trip it was to have a few days of vacation and not be aware of the media, but he finally agreed. Elvis appeared shy at first, but then sure of himself before the journalists, there were reporters from everywhere and the rain of flashes came first. They then asked him about his visit, about his military life, about the Germans, etc. But something that the French would like very much would be the comment that Elvis made: "Ah! Paris, what a city: all these sidewalk cafes and the women who don't seem to be in a hurry...", they also asked him about B.B " Brigitte Bardot? She's the eighth wonder of the world," said Elvis. And about the trip he said: "What do I want to do in Paris? Lose myself like a child... have fun" This would be one of three trips he made to Paris during his military leave. What he liked the most would be to enjoy the Parisian nights in the Nightclubs, such as the Club des Champs Elyses, The Lido, the Folies-Bergère, the Moulin Rouge, the Carrousel. He had a great time as a young man his age. He even began to play in a club after the performance, he saw a piano and began to play singing, everyone came up with surprise, no one would have expected that the best artist, the most valued, would be enjoying himself for free and improvised. Elvis was singing ballads that he knew and when they asked him why he started playing what he said is "he used to do that at home when he noticed the piano, he couldn't resist, he wanted to feel at home". This would be one of his first Parisian nights where Elvis could be himself and have fun with his friends.
"Following the Path of the King..."

Priscilla Ann Beaulieu

The women who marked his destiny

Priscilla Presley
Elvis met Cilla in Bad Nauheim in September 1959. When he met her, he was only 14 years old, when an acquaintance couple proposed to him to meet Elvis Presley at their house at Goethe Strasse 14, where Elvis Presley lived during his military service.
She was a sweet, discreet girl, mature for her age, from the moment they met it would be a very special relationship. Elvis was at a very delicate moment in his life and he needed affection, friendship and understanding, everything he had lost with the death of his mother and would somehow find in Priscilla.

The woman who would become his wife over the years, Priscilla Ann Wagner was born on May 24, 1945 in Brooklyn, New York. Her father, James Wagner, died when she was a child in a plane crash, and her mother remarried Paul Beaulieu, who was then an officer in the Air Force. Her father was posted to Germany and that's where she was when she would meet Elvis. That day she was wearing a white and navy blue sailor dress and at all times she avoided saying her age since everyone who was there was older than her. Elvis fell in love with this shy and not very talkative girl and tried to impress her with her songs on her piano, he really impressed her with her beauty and her perfection and he would see in her the image of the ideal woman.
But no effort was necessary since the connection was mutual, they had things in common and the conversation was very important at this time for Elvis. When Priscilla met her, she told her about her love for Mario Lanza, her connection with opera, with rock music.
They spent their nights talking about everything, Elvis would share his insecurity at that moment, since he didn't know how everything was going to be when he returned to the real world. He talked to her about her mother, her pain, and she helped him feel better, because above all, Priscilla was patient and serene, transmitting a certain peace.
They were very important days for Elvis and in which he felt better thanks to the conversations he had with his little Cilla and little by little a strong bond grew between the two. When he left there they communicated by letter, they exchanged records...

Elvis found in Priscilla an answer to her emptiness among so many people and for this reason he wanted to take her by her side and share her life. Elvis wanted a beautiful, quiet, discreet woman, who would not even give her opinion to talk about and at first Priscilla was like that, but logically she grew up and over time her personality changed and his too. When Elvis arrived back in Memphis he was still He had another girlfriend, Anita Wood, with whom he continued dating until two years later and at the same time he maintained this other relationship with Priscilla until he was finally able to take her to Graceland, his home. Elvis wanted her with him and would tell one of her friends Rex Mandsfield that Cilla was like an angel.. and so young.. that he could raise her however he wanted, Elvis really wanted to mold her to his liking.
A very daring situation at the time, due to her younger age and because her parents really accepted the situation that was not normal, in this commitment and because Elvis gave her word that he would respect her and marry her. she. Although things over time took another more complicated path, finally on May 1, 1967 Elvis married her, bound by all of the above and had a daughter named Lisa Marie.

Although there was a mutual love and for a long time they were happy, evidently Elvis's way of being unfaithful, the influence of the pills, his habits. Also Priscilla's personal change that had grown and acquired her own personality over time, made an inevitable separation finally happen. They followed two different paths but always with a good relationship. Priscilla dedicated herself to cinema, dance and television.
After Elvis Presley passed away, Priscilla demonstrated her ability as an entrepreneur and businesswoman by keeping Elvis Presley's legacy alive to this day.
Love sometimes sweet, sometimes bitter... when it blossoms, grows and reaches its climax, life can be wonderful and enjoy it. But if the llama is not fed, it dies little by little every day. And even if you want to maintain that union, despite the disappointment, the circumstances, the image...
the family, the union is lost little by little at every moment, until it withers... and only that beautiful memory of youth will remain.
The woman who would mark his path

"Following the Path of the King..."

The private world of Elvis Presley

The personality and charm of the boy from Tupelo

Roswitha Klaus
Bad Nauheim 1958.

Elvis was a charming man, his way of being kind, his close treatment, his look... everything caught anyone who approached him. Both men and women surrendered to his person and there is no doubt about the charisma that he always had. When Elvis went to the military service in Germany, for two years his life was very different from the one he had had until then. 

The world paralyzed his customs, the circumstances of the moment, the pain over the death of his mother and, although he was famous throughout the world, his artistic life had been sacrificed to clean up his image. It was a moment of success but also of criticism before a public divided by his fresh image, but challenging at the same time, to a mature generation that did not accept him. 

Colonel Parker's maneuver was to remove Elvis for the time being with military service while he continued to publish his records and keep his success at a distance. Elvis went to Germany to be a little more protected from the media world and there he met the person who would be his future wife, Priscilla Beaulieu, in September 1959. But he still had another girlfriend in Memphis, Anita Wood, with whom he had been in a relationship for some time and would continue after returning home again in 1960, and there were also his fans... who always had a very special relationship. He was young and also a very sensitive and special man who attracted bees like honey. 

In Bad Nauheim he lived from October 1958 and, for 18 months, he would meet many people. He used to have parties, meetings where he talked, sang and so on. There he would have many special relationships because he met many women, but above all the memory he left in some of them is worth mentioning. 

Roswitha Klaus remembered how he met Elvis at the Grunewald Hotel, through his German secretary whom he met while skating ice. Talking to her, he told her that she was a great fan of Elvis and suggested that he accompany her to the hotel. She took it with her, up to room ten, the room that belonged to Elvis Presley. Suddenly, the door opened, she walked in, looked into her eyes, and melted. 

The innocence of that time is curious, that someone you meet in a public place takes you to meet a Hollywood star at a hotel... Unthinkable under other circumstances but it would be this way as it was for the first time. 

Elvis would talk to her and she liked him from the first moment, he would become Roswitha's first love. For the time it was very inappropriate for a girl to leave her house to a hotel even if there were many people in it and also if she arrived very late. at night. His father was a painter and very strict but he never discovered this. 

Elvis was harassed everywhere and, although he had a little privacy, she was very young and being alone in a hotel room with a man was very frowned upon , but that's how it started with Elvis. Although Roswitha remembers kissing her, a wonderful time evidently followed at the House at 14 Goethestrasse where Elvis later moved. He said that he preferred natural, shy girls and described her as someone sensitive, romantic... he would sit on the edge of the bed, play her guitar and sing for her. They also went for walks until late at night, since there were always fans waiting in front of the house. The most curious thing is that Elvis barely spoke German and she didn't speak English either, but they didn't need many words to understand each other. She didn't like him doing maneuvers and she dreaded the day she returned to America. 

Roswitha had problems with her mother, at her job because she was constantly fatigued and distracted by this relationship. When March 1960 arrived, she reached the end of her love affair with Elvis, who would end his military service in Germany. It is clear that Elvis had several relationships in Bad Nuheim at the same time, including Priscilla's, who was very important or seemed to be at that time. be. It was the beginning of a whim, of a love that would turn into a serious commitment and would end years later in a wedding. She would be the only girl then with whom he decided to be seen when leaving Bad Nauheim, the only one who officially said goodbye to him and accompanied him until he took the plane to go to Memphis. There is no doubt that Elvis made every relationship a magical and special moment that he made that every woman felt unique and special regardless of whether she enjoyed several relationships at the same time. 

Elvis Presley the boy from Tupelo... the man, the myth... The King !"Following the Path of the King...""

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