Lisa Marie Presley, singer-songwriter, Elvis’s only descendant and dedicated guardian of her father’s legacy, died Thursday after being hospitalized for a medical emergency. She was 54 years old.
Her death at a Los Angeles hospital was confirmed by her mother, Priscilla, a few hours after her daughter was taken to the emergency room after suffering a health accident at her home.
“It is with deep regret that I must share the devastating news that my beautiful daughter Lisa Marie has left us,” Priscilla Presley said in a statement. “She was the most passionate, strong, caring person I have ever met.”
Presley, the only daughter of Elvis and Priscilla Presley, had the same taciturn charm as her father, her drooping eyes, her insolent smile, her deep, sensual voice. She released her own rock albums in the 2000s, and performed on stage with the likes of Pat Benatar and Richard Hawley, among others.
He even had musical ties to his father, backing him up for vocals on Elvis recordings like “In the Ghetto” and “Don’t Cry Daddy,” a sad ballad that reminded him of the untimely death of his mother, Grandma. by Lisa Marie, Gladys Presley.
“It’s been my whole life,” he told The Associated Press in 2012, speaking about his father’s influence. “It’s not something I hear now and it’s different. Although I can listen more carefully. I stand by the fact that I’ve always been a fan. He has always been an influence on me.”
Her birth, exactly nine months after her parents’ wedding, made international news and her origins were not lost on her. In support of the Baz Luhrmann musical “Elvis”, Lisa Marie and Priscilla Presley have attended red carpets and awards shows alongside the film’s stars.
Lisa Marie was at the Golden Globes on Tuesday, in time to celebrate the best actor in a drama award for Austin Butler for playing her father. Days before, she was in Memphis, Tennessee, at Graceland — the mansion where Elvis lived — to commemorate the date of birth of her father, January 8.
She lived with her mother, an actress known for the “Dallas” and “Naked Gun” films, in California after her parents separated in 1973. She had early memories of her father during his visits to Graceland , riding golf carts around the neighborhood and making impressive entrances in his own home.
“He was always totally, totally fixed. You would never see him in his pajamas coming down the stairs, ever,” Lisa Marie told The Associated Press in 2012. “You would never see him except in ‘ready to be seen’ attire.”
Elvis Presley died in August 1977, when he was barely 42 years old, and Lisa Marie 9 years old. She was staying at Graceland at the time and remembered him kissing her goodnight hours before passing out and never recovering. The next day when she saw him, he was face down in a bathroom.
“I had a feeling,” he told Rolling Stone in 2003. “That he wasn’t okay, all I know is that he had that feeling, and that happened. She was obsessed with death at a very young age.”
Later, she generated her own headlines. She had well-known drug problems and marriages. Her four husbands include Michael Jackson and Nicolas Cage.
Jackson and Presley were married in the Dominican Republic in 1994, but the marriage ended two years later and was defined by numerous bizarre public appearances, including an unexpected kiss from Jackson during the MTV Video Music Awards and a joint interview with Diane Sawyer on in which she defended Jackson against accusations that he had sexually abused a minor.
His other famous marriage lasted even less: Cage filed for divorce after four months of marriage in 2002.
“I’ve run into a lot of walls and trees,” he told the AP in 2012. “But now I can look back and tell you that… It was a growing process, just in a different way. I was just in front of everyone all the time. Because all of that is documented, of course.”
Lisa Marie became involved in numerous humanitarian causes, from anti-poverty programs run by the Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation to relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina. For her work she was recognized in New Orleans and Memphis, Tennessee.
Presley had two children, actress Riley Keough, born in 1989, and Benjamin Keough, born in 1992, with Danny Keough. He also had twins, Harper and Finley Lockwood, with ex-husband Michael Lockwood in 2008.
Her marriage to Lockwood ended in a complicated and lengthy divorce that began in 2016 and was still unresolved when she died, though she was officially declared single in 2021. In the fight the twins, now 15, were temporarily placed under conservatorship to protect them in 2017. Presley and Lockwood later shared custody, but remained in conflict over the issue and Lockwood was seeking more child support from Presley.
Benjamin Keough committed suicide in 2020 at the age of 27. Presley was open about his grief and last August she wrote an essay on “living the horrible reality” since the death of his son.
“I have dealt with death, grief and loss since I was 9 years old. I’ve had more than my fair share of it in my life and somehow I’ve made it this far,” she wrote in the essay he shared with People magazine.
“But this, the death of my beautiful, beautiful son? The sweetest, most amazing being I have ever had the privilege of knowing, who made me feel so honored every day to be his mother. That she was so much like her grandfather on so many levels that it actually scared me. That it made me care about him more than I would naturally,” the essay continued. “Not. Just no, no, no, no.”
Lisa Marie became the sole heir to the Elvis Presley fund after her father died. Together with Elvis Presley Enterprises, the trust managed Graceland and other assets until she sold its majority interest in 2005. She retained ownership of the Graceland Mansion, the 13 acres (5.2 hectares) surrounding it, and the objects within it. home. Her son is buried there along with her father and other members of the Presley family.
Lisa Marie Presley was a member of the Church of Scientology, her son was born in 1992 following the precepts established by the founder of the church L. Ron Hubbard, according to an AP report at the time. She later left the church.
Lisa Marie and Priscilla Presley used to make trips to Graceland for huge fan celebrations commemorating the death and birth of Elvis. One of the two planes at Graceland is named the Lisa Marie.
After her first album, “To Whom It May Concern,” in 2003, some fans came to see her perform live out of curiosity about her famous family, she told the AP in 2005.
“First I had to overcome the preconception about myself,” she said of the barriers to becoming a singer-songwriter.
“Somehow I had to get rid of that and introduce myself and that was the first obstacle, then sing in front of everyone and, that was the second (obstacle), and I am the daughter of, you know whose daughter I am, I had some obstacles to overcome without a doubt”, he pointed out. “But the scales never went in the other direction too much.”
Associated Press writers Andrew Dalton and Ryan Pearson contributed to this report.