Elvis Presley, Third Armored Division, Died 22 Years Ago.

by Daniel Russ on August 15, 2009

Elvis Presley, Third Armored Division, US Army

Elvis Presley, Third Armored Division, US Army

At a press conference in 1957,  the Memphis Draft Board announced that the teen idol rock star Elvis Presley was about to be drafted into the United States Army. He was in the middle of filming the movie King Creole and the draft board was kind enough to grant Mr. Presley a deferment to finish the movie.

This was a coup for the US Army. Elvis, a poor kid who made his own way, a working man’s hero, an a major superstar felt very patriotic about the country and expected to be treated no differently than any one else. The Army successfully defended him from paparazzi but used the publicity he achieved for them for their own recruitment needs. If Elvis Presley serves, then why shouldn’t I? This from Wkipedia :

Fellow soldiers have attested to Presley’s wish to be seen as an able, ordinary soldier, despite his fame, and to his generosity while in the service. To supplement meager under-clothing supplies, Presley bought an extra set of fatigues for everyone in his outfit. He also donated his Army pay to charity, and purchased all the TV sets for personnel on the base at that time.

Elvis trained at Ft. Hood, texas and then was stationed at Fort Chaffee in Arkansas. He was assigned to the Third Armored Division stationed in Freidberg, Germany.

During his service his mother fell ill and he was given a leave to visit her. She died in 1958.

He served two years, was given an honorable discharge and as my Mom would say: The Rest You Know.

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