Published: Wed, August 16, 2017
Life&Culture | By Rose Hansen

The Day Elvis Died: 40 Years Later

The Day Elvis Died: 40 Years Later

It's estimated that 10 million Elvis Presley albums were sold just previous year.

Four decades have now passed since the music icon's death.

"He opened the door to carefree rock "n" roll and the attitude".

Shake your head at the unashamed commercialism Elvis has spawned in the 40 years since his death.

To honour Elvis' legacy, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Minnesota-based Starkey Hearing Foundation, which conducts hearing missions around the globe and has given the gift of hearing aids to over 100 countries. Many fans remain convinced that he is in fact still alive, despite all the medical evidence to the contrary. Elvis Presley Enterprises is now majority-owned by Graceland Holdings, led by managing partner Joel Weinshanker.

A fan takes a photo of herself at the Meditation Garden where Elvis Presley is buried alongside his parents and grandmother at his Graceland mansion on August 12, 2017 in Memphis, Tennessee.

Forty years ago today, Elvis Presley died in his Memphis, Tenn., home.

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Some fans said Elvis played a special part in their lives. "They were the only ones I wanted to listen to over and over and over".

"I don't think Elvis would like it if he knew the fans were charged to go up and see", she said. His death on August 16, 1977, from heart failure came as a devastating shock to fans and the industry.

"Everyone asks my wife what she wore on our wedding day, and she always says it didn't really matter because she didn't want to upstage me".

"I have a tattoo on my breast of him so he's close to my heart, he'll never be dead as long as I'm breathing", fan Betty Donathan said.

Snider said Presley's name elicits a reaction from students whose grandparents might have seen him, but some of those students don't know what he looked like or really even know who he was.

A crowd that size will have a lot of different reasons for being there, but the common thread is that Elvis and Elvis's music meant something to them.

A 10-minute drive from Graceland, the guide at Sun Studio tells fans they are on "sacred and hallowed" ground in the basement studio where Presley recorded his first song, "That's All Right", in 1954.

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