Lisa Marie Presley dies at the age of 54
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Earlier this month, Elvis Presley’s daughter suddenly died of a cardiac arrest at just 54. Just over a week later, Lisa Marie Presley was buried in Graceland’s Meditation Garden near her father and next to her son Benjamin Keough, who died in 2020. Since the tragic news, some of her close family members have been paying tribute by sharing touching memories.
Elvis’ cousin Billy Smith, the last surviving Memphis Mafia member, knew The King before he was famous and became one of the star’s trusted confidants during his short 42 years. He lived in a trailer on the Graceland estate with his wife Jo and two sons Danny and Joey. The boys were childhood friends of Elvis’ daughter Lisa Marie and spent a number of years running amok all over the grounds surrounding the lavish mansion. The King would sleep all day and be up all night, so the group of Memphis Mafia kids would ride around on golf carts and be extra cheeky with the maids and extended family members expected to look after them. Danny, who has his own YouTube channel, has answered fan questions about his time with Lisa Marie, in tribute to her.
Asked on his Memphis Mafia Kid YouTube channel what Lisa Marie’s favourite food was as a kid, he said how much she loved candy, peanut butter cups and especially French fries. In fact, he enjoyed the latter so much that she once scoffed down her friend’s plate when their back was turned, as well as her own.
Before she died, Elvis’ daughter did admit in interviews that she was “a terror” as a child and it turns out wouldn’t take no for answer. This was especially as her father “was not strict at all”.
Danny was asked if Lisa Marie, who was just 9 when her father died, was told “no” would she be sneaky and go and ask Elvis. Her cousin laughed: “You’re damn skippy [she did!] If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a million times, ‘I’m going to tell my Daddy’ and most of the time she would….She loved being bossy and she loved being in control. That was just Lisa.”
During the Q&A, he was also asked by fans if the Smith family were invited to Lisa Marie’s funeral as her cousins.
Danny said: “We was not. We didn’t hear anything from anybody.” In the end, he watched the live stream with his parents. Of course, it’s worth noting that it was a public memorial so they could have attended. However, the Smiths haven’t seen Lisa Marie since she was a child which might explain why they weren’t on the main guest list, as was the case with last year’s Graceland premiere of the Elvis movie.
Asked if he would visit Lisa Marie’s grave, which is open to the public, he said: “Yes we definitely will… I want to go up there and spend the time that I feel like I want to spend and get that done to help complete my life, if that’s the right words. I think you all know what I mean…in my heart I would say that I know that I cherished every single minute of [my time with her] and wouldn’t take anything in the world for it.”
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