Over 700 Elvis Presley Fans Pay Tribute to Late Icon by Gathering at Graceland Before 43rd Anniversary of His Death

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With many annual gatherings and events being postponed or canceled this year, one longstanding tradition was maintained thanks to careful scheduling and crowd control.

This year marks the 43rd year since Elvis Presley’s death on Aug. 16, 1977. Family, celebrities and fans are still remembering the legend through vigils held in his honor.

A post on the Visit Graceland Instagram account explained that attendance at its annual Candlelight Vigil event would be lower than in years past.

“The Candlelight Vigil will be more limited than in past years due to social distancing and capacity restrictions, but the longstanding tradition will carry on with a fan procession to Meditation Garden,” the post said.

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According to The Associated Press, 720 tickets were available for the Saturday night event, and all of them were snapped up. The three-hour vigil was carefully orchestrated, staggering attendees and enforcing strict guidelines.

Participants were required to wear masks and socially distance, and as WMC-TV reported, they were not allowed to stand in groups of more than six people.

Fans who weren’t able to snag a ticket or make the pilgrimage to Memphis, Tennessee, were invited to follow along with the livestream.

“Join us online for the annual Candlelight Vigil live from Elvis Presley’s Graceland during Elvis Week 2020,” the Vimeo page for the Candlelight Vigil 2020 reads.

“Fans will gather at Graceland on the evening of August 15 to carry a candle up to Meditation Garden in quiet remembrance of Elvis’ life and legacy. Fans from around the world are invited to join us live from Elvis’ home in Memphis, Tennessee.”

Fellow musicians also posted on social media to remember the king.

“I’m often asked who I would like to hang out with with living or passed,” Tim McGraw posted on Instagram, “and there’s no question…The King.”

“We lost him 43 years ago he was cool.”

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“Saluting The King today,” Tanya Tucker tweeted. “It doesn’t feel like it’s been 43 years since we lost @ElvisPresley.

“I’ll treasure our memories FOREVER!”

It’s been a tough year for the Presleys, with the loss of Benjamin Keough, the son of Lisa Marie Presley.

“These are some of the darkest days of my family’s life,” grandmother Priscilla Presley shared on Facebook. “The shock of losing Ben has been devastating. Trying to put all the pieces together of all the possible whys has penetrated my soul.

“Each day I wake up I pray it will get better. Then, I think of my daughter and the pain she is going through as she was a doting mother. Ben’s father, Danny, who is completely lost, as Ben was his only son.”

Though the family has suffered loss, they are clearly not forgotten.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking