Elvis Presley had very eccentric behaviors, from his flamboyant clothing sense to repetitive eating habits, but he was also fond of guns. When The King returned to perform live with his residences in Las Vegas, he was walking around the audience giving kisses to the girls during Can’t Help Falling In Love. However, this was soon halted in 1970 following a death threat, which resulted in the star increasing her security dramatically.
That fall, Elvis was obsessed with buying guns and visiting police forces across the country to collect their badges. He even presented President Richard Nixon with a memorial Colt. 45 pistol when visiting the Oval Office at the White House.
A shooting range was set up behind Graceland, next to his father Vernon’s office, and bullet holes can still be seen on the wall, barely covered with paint on the brickwork. There’s even a bullet hole in the bottom of Lisa Marie’s kids slide, but the Memphis Mafia was careful not to leave loaded guns lying around the mansion.
Elvis cousin Billy Smith’s son, Danny, said on his YouTube channel: “As for us, all children [and] Lisa runs around … [we] never seen one. With some guys? Sure indeed. Have I seen pistols and stuff on Elvis or Thompson machine guns or shotgun rifles? Sure, but he either showed it, or used it, or had it on. He was sure enough and wouldn’t have done anything like that [leave a loaded gun around the house]. “
Nonetheless, when the king was in mood swings, he sometimes took it out on a television or a toilet. His last friend Ginger Alden remembered the star’s love for guns with this “dangerous combination”.
Ginger told ET, “We read together and the toilet made noises. Elvis got up and left the room, came back with a machine gun and continued to shoot in the toilet. “
On a number of occasions Elvis fired a gun at what he saw on television, either for fun or because he didn’t like what he saw. The one from the Palm Springs house with a bullet hole through the screen is on display at Graceland to this day.
His cousin Billy said on the Memphis Mafia Kid YouTube channel, “I mean, he could have been mad at someone or something that happened and he would just … take it out … and he’s been shooting several televisions now.” I often found it funny because [that’s] as he was. He answered quickly …[if] something was bothering him … it was, pick up the gun, boom! He never thought about it twice. “
However, Elvis had to be careful because he almost shot off his private parts in a terrible accident.
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Billy remembered once taking a motorcycle break at a small gas station when nature asked for Elvis. The king’s cousin heard a loud knock from the bathroom and asked if the star was okay. It turned out that his gun had fallen out of its holster and hit the floor with a loud bang without firing. Elvis came out and said to him, “Well, I’m lucky, it didn’t blow my mind [privates] out!”
The singer sometimes even took guns with him on his dates, with ex-girlfriend Mindi Miller remembering the first time he got to her apartment. She said the king was driving in his limousine with the roof open and a rifle in hand.
Just like James Bond, Elvis always took a gun to bed for protection and kept it on his bedside table. And when he had guests in his bedroom up at Graceland, he occasionally jokingly threatened to snap it up if someone disagreed with his opinion, which would get the Memphis Mafia laughing.