The Untold Story of Elvis Presley’s Death

by YvetteComment — Updated November 30, 2023

Remember the King who did not rule over any country but over the hearts of millions of fans worldwide? Yes, I’m talking about the one and only – Elvis, the legendary King of Rock n’ Roll!

And, if you’ve ever wondered, “How did Elvis die?” you’re not alone. The circumstances surrounding his unusual death are still a topic of debate and conspiracy theories to this day.

Elvis left behind an unforgettable legacy that still lives on. Even today, fans continue to celebrate his life – and music – worldwide.

This article will uncover the real reasons and details regarding when and how Elvis Presley died; be sure to stick around!
Embed from Getty Images

Key Takeaway

  • Elvis Presley, an iconic musician who pioneered rock and roll music, had major health issues later in life, including weight gain and addiction to prescription drugs.
  • On August 16, 1977, Presley was found unconscious in his Graceland bathroom at age 42. Attempts to revive him failed, and he was pronounced dead that afternoon.
  • Presley’s death sparked many conspiracy theories, but his musical legacy lives on as one of the most influential artists in history.

King of Rock n Roll: Early Life & Career

Embed from Getty Images
Elvis Aron Presley was born in Tupelo, MS, on January 8, 1935. His parents were Gladys Love and Vernon Presley, who were working-class people.

The “Jailhouse Rock” star showed interest in music from an early age. He was drawn to the psalms and gospel songs he heard at his local Assembly of God Church. Then, at 11, he received his first guitar as a birthday gift, quickly learning to play chords and sing.

At 13, the Presley family moved to Memphis, Tennessee. There, he developed his unique style – the long hair and sideburns. He graduated from Humes High School in 1953 – where he wowed everyone with an unforgettable performance at a talent show.

Only a year later, in 1954, Elvis took the world by storm after releasing his first single – “That’s All Right” – recorded at the legendary Sun Studios.

Three days later, the song was played on the local radio station for the first time, and the response from listeners was overwhelming:

They jammed the station’s phone lines, begging to hear it again. The song was played 15 times by the end of the evening!

Elvis signed a contract with RCA Records in 1955. His first No. 1 single, Heartbreak Hotel, sold over a million copies – and his first album, simply named “Elvis Presley,” topped the charts, too.

In 1956, he signed a movie contract with Paramount Pictures. His first movie, “Love Me Tender,” was an instant hit.

He and his beloved girlfriend, Priscilla Presley, exchanged vows in 1967 – and welcomed their daughter, Lisa Marie Presley, a year later.

Despite critics labeling his dance as “vulgar,” Elvis remained dedicated to his talent – and became one of the brightest stars of his time.

Even today, Elvis Presley remains an icon – inspiring generations with his timeless music.

Elvis’ Health Problems: Excessive Lifestyle & Prescription Drugs?

Embed from Getty Images
Recently, I watched an exciting movie about Elvis, starring Austin Butler and Tom Hanks. The movie was full of drama and heart-wrenching emotions.

It showed everything – from Elvis Presley’s life and musical career to his marriage with Priscilla Presley, his eating habits, prescription drug abuse, and his death.

It’s no secret that Elvis had an unhealthy diet.

One of his trademarks was his famous peanut butter and banana sandwich, filled with bacon and fried in bacon grease.

He also enjoyed soul food, which was prepared by his personal chef at his well-known Graceland mansion.

Even on tour, Elvis never compromised on his love for food.

He indulged in king-sized portions of bacon, cheeseburgers, barbecue pizza, sauerkraut, and cornbread – among other things. Some say he ate so much food that it could feed several.

And let’s not forget Elvis Presley’s busy schedule – especially in his final days:

During the last year of his life, Presley performed over 55 shows!

His family members and fans wondered how he managed to keep up with such a schedule and deal with all the stress and fame.

This exhaustion probably led him to substance abuse, which was later shown in his toxicology report – and possibly played a role in his cause of death.

The Day Elvis Presley Died

Embed from Getty Images
So, what year did Elvis die?

On August 16th, 1977, the world received the devastating news of the singer’s death. This news left his family members heartbroken. His ex-wife Priscilla once said that, at first, she was shocked by the news; she couldn’t believe Elvis died.

Elvis was only 42 at death.

When & How Did Elvis Presley Die?

On August 16, 1977, around 9:30 am, Presley told his then-girlfriend, Ginger Alden, he was going to the restroom. Considering his chronic constipation, “going to the bathroom” meant sitting on the toilet for a long time.

Ginger woke up around 1:30 pm and realized that Elvis wasn’t around; she soon found him unconscious on the toilet floor.

She later recalled that his face was purple – and his eyes “staring straight ahead and blood red.

Presley was rushed to Baptist Memorial Hospital – but at 3:30 pm on the same day, he was pronounced dead. The cause of death was heart failure.

Where Did Elvis Presley Die?

Embed from Getty Images
Elvis spent his last day at his Graceland home with his daughter, girlfriend, and a few friends – planning to tour Portland, Maine, later that day.

He was a night owl and had trouble sleeping, so he had been taking sleeping pills for a long time.

On his final day, he stayed up late to play racquetball with his cousin Billy around 4 am. They even sang together and played piano. Then, around 5 am, Elvis took his sleeping pills, but they didn’t help him – so he took two more doses.

Despite this, he was still unable to fall asleep, so he went to the bathroom around 9:30 that morning. He brought a book, “A Scientific Search for the Face of Jesus” by Frank O Adams, and told Ginger Alden he would read in the bathroom.

That’s the last time the King of Rock n Roll was seen alive.

How Elvis Died: Medical Factors and Elvis Presley Cause of Death

Embed from Getty Images
The circumstances surrounding Elvis Presley’s death have been subject to speculation. As it turned out, he had a complex web of health issues.

So, what did Elvis die of?

Dr. Jerry Francisco, who was the Medical Chief of Tennessee at the time, attributed the singer’s passing to a heart attack – more specifically, cardiac arrhythmia.

It was revealed in an autopsy that Elvis had atherosclerosis in his coronary vessels and aorta – and his heart was double the normal size. Even before his passing, he had been hospitalized several times due to hypertension.

The autopsy also showed that Elvis had rare genetic conditions that caused him to develop emphysema – while other reports suggest that Elvis may have also had diabetes and liver enlargement.

Death Due to Chronic Constipation?

It was common for Elvis to consume large amounts of high-fat meals. He reportedly weighed about 350 pounds at the time of his death.

While in his Graceland mansion, Presley typically ate whatever he wanted and was known for combining food with the prescribed drugs during his final moments.

Some doctors said that this combination of drug use and fatty junk food consumption led to persistent constipation – which caused his untimely death:

The autopsy showed his belly artery was crushed as he was straining to defecate, leading to his cardiac arrest.

Did Drugs Play a Part in Elvis’ Death?

The public was alarmed by Presley’s unhealthy lifestyle and rampant prescription drug abuse.

He abused sleeping pills, antihistamines, painkillers, and laxatives. But his ex-wife, Priscilla Presley, said that he’d never used any street drugs; he obtained prescribed substances he used legally.

The autopsy showed that his blood contained high levels of opiates – Dilaudid, Codeine, Percodan, and Demerol.

Elvis Presley’s personal physician, Dr. George Nichopoulos, accompanied him on tours – and he was the one prescribing excessive amounts of drugs. According to some sources, in 1977 alone, Dr. Nichopoulos prescribed over 10,000 different drugs, including amphetamines, tranquilizers, narcotics, and hormones.

He was even accused of overprescribing drugs, and as a result of malpractice, the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners permanently revoked his medical license in 1995.

Yet, Dr. Jerry Francisco explained that a drug overdose wasn’t a contributing factor to the singer’s death.

Circumstances and Theories Surrounding Elvis’s Death

Embed from Getty Images
Elvis died of heart disease 46 years ago – but as with many celebrities, fans denied his death, and many conspiracy theories about him being alive and well appeared over the years.

One of the theories was that Elvis’s death was faked.

Some said that on the day of his death, he bought a ticket for Buenos Aires and moved to Argentina, traveling under the name Jon Burrows.

The myth was debunked; booking a direct flight from Memphis to Buenos Aires back in 1977 was impossible.

Writer Gail Brewer-Giorgio believed that Elvis Presley’s death was fake.

She even wrote a book claiming that Presley needed to hide after exposing the criminal organization called “The Fraternity.”

Nothing was found in the FBI’s files about Elvis or “The Fraternity,” and this theory was dismissed.

Some people claimed to have seen Presley in the airport scene of “Home Alone.” Later, it turned out that an actor, Gary Grott, played the role in the movie.

Fans even speculated that the “Hound Dog” singer was alive after an impersonator visited his Graceland home for his 82nd birthday – but closer inspection revealed that the man had no resemblance to Presley.

One of the most bizarre theories, though?

It’s that aliens abducted Elvis.

The sad news that Lisa Marie died at the age of 54 hit the world this year. Since she and her father died of the same cause – cardiac arrest – speculations surrounding their death started to spread through the media again.

Conclusion: Elvis’ Legacy and Impact

Embed from Getty Images
Elvis Presley revolutionized rock and roll and captured the hearts of fans worldwide with his good looks, unique voice, and unforgettable dancing style.

His legacy lives on – with over 500 million records sold worldwide, he’s earned the title of “the greatest solo music artist of all time.” With a net worth of $5 million at his death, he was among the highest-paid musicians in history, too!

It is no wonder John Lennon once said, “Before Elvis, there was nothing.” It’s hard to imagine the world of rock and roll without the King’s influence.

Whether or not you’re a fan of Elvis, be sure to join the conversation – share thoughts, memories, and favorite songs in the comments below !

Meta Description: You’re a fan of Elvis Presley? Be sure to join me on this exciting journey through his career, untimely passing, and the lasting impact he had on music history!

Leave a Comment