Elvis Presley isn’t just known for his music. He also had quite a reputation when it came to his love interests. While everyone knew about his marriage to Priscilla Presley, the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll died an engaged man to model Ginger Alden.
Alden was the last person to see Presley alive. And she’s also recalled what her final vacation to Hawaii was like with him. Here’s what she said about her tropical trip and why it was cut short.
Ginger Alden was the last person to see Elvis Presley alive
Alden and Presley technically met when Alden was just 5 years old. And 15 years later, they reconnected and started a romance. Presley was 20 years older than Alden, but this didn’t stop the model from believing she and the King were meant to be. And they planned to walk down the aisle in December 1977.
Unfortunately, Presley and Alden never got to wed. Presley died in the bathroom of Graceland in August 1977. And Alden was the one to find him. On the night of his death, Presley told Alden he was heading into the bathroom to read — and Alden noticed Presley was still there several hours later. She finally opened the bathroom door and found him slumped over.
“I didn’t want to think he was dead,” she said. “God wouldn’t want to take him so soon.”
Alden explained why their final vacation together was cut short
There were plenty of rumors that surrounded Alden and Presley’s relationship. From affairs with other women to Presley’s difficult temperament, many wondered what it was really like for the beauty queen and the musician behind the scenes. But Alden has fond memories of Presley.
Elvis Australia notes Alden talked about her final vacation with Presley in March 1977 during an interview.
“My time with Elvis was so special and the Hawaiian vacation was a lot of fun,” Alden explained. “Elvis knew I had never been to Hawaii and wanted to take my whole family but only my sisters could go at this time. … My sisters and I stayed with Elvis in the back of the Lisa Marie during the flight as he joked, laughed, and sang.”
Unfortunately, the Hawaiian vacation was interrupted by a medical issue. “The trip was so beautiful but unfortunately cut short when Elvis irritated one of his eyes and we had to return to Memphis,” Alden added. “I stayed at Graceland and administered eye cream for a few days so I could help him be prepared for his next tour.”
Presley reportedly adored Hawaii
It seems Presley had a special place in his heart for the tropical state. The Graceland Blog notes he spent a ton of time vacationing, recording, and performing in Hawaii. Presley was so taken with Hawaii that he even created one of his most beloved living spaces in Graceland, “The Jungle Room,” to look as lush and beautiful as the state. He often hung out and recorded music in that space.
His first trip to the state was reportedly in 1957, as he had a concert at Honolulu Stadium and then another performance at Schofield Army Barracks in Oahu. In 1961, Presley performed a benefit concert on the Pearl Harbor naval base. The concert aimed to raise money to create a memorial for those who died in the Pearl Harbor bombing.
Aside from performances, it seems Presley enjoyed taking his family and friends there, too. Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley vacationed in Hawaii in 1969, though they used the last name “Carpenter” to get there undetected by fans.
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