Graceland: Take a live virtual tour of Elvis' Memphis home
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On August 16, 1977, Elvis Presley suffered a fatal heart at his home of Graceland. That day, a No 6 ambulance transported The King’s body to Baptist Memorial Hospital ahead of his funeral two days later. The vehicle, also known as the Elvis Unit, was later saved from being scrapped when bought at a Memphis city auction.
The man who bought the Elvis Presley ambulance was a Memphis police officer called Terry, who was a friend of the star.
The King was famously a big supporter of US law enforcement and had many honorary badges which are on display at Graceland to this day.
Terry worked the midnight shift at South Precinct and Elvis, a night owl himself, would call the police officer up and asked to be picked up at Graceland so he could ride with him and his partner.
While on the day of The King’s funeral, that same police officer was part of the crowd control.
Terry was photographed standing on top of the lefthand side of Graceland’s gates, overlooking everyone.
Having purchased the Elvis ambulance at some point later, the vehicle has rested on his property for years, hidden by greenery.
The historic vehicle was discovered there with permission, by Elvis expert Billy Stallings Spa Guy, who has been searching for it for years.
The YouTuber filmed the moment he found the ambulance on August 16, 2018, exactly 41 years to the day that it transported The King’s body from Graceland, having decided to keep it a secret until now.
In the video, Billy says: “It is ambulance No 6. The one that carried Elvis to Baptist Memorial Hospital.
“That is the actual ambulance right there. Un-freaking believable!
“Do you know how long I’ve been looking for this thing? Years! And it’s literally right there. I can’t believe it. This is so surreal.”
The Elvis expert pointed out the Tennessee licence plate and 454 on the front.
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Billy also showed a sticking out part of the left side of the vehicle that could very well be what pulled off a musical note from Graceland’s gates, when it drove Elvis to hospital that fateful date.
Summing up the find, he said: “The Holy Grail! I feel like Indiana Jones and I’ve just captured the Temple of Doom!”
As for what’s happened to the Elvis ambulance since, it’s going to be put on display at a brand new museum near Graceland called Tigerman Karate Dojo and Museum.
Billy has worked alongside some of Elvis’ cousins in the Smith family to restore the building where The King and his Memphis Mafia would practice Pasaryu karate, as taught under Kang Rhee.
The Tigerman Karate Dojo and Museum will eventually offer karate lessons and even includes a star on the carpet inside where Elvis would give his demonstrations.
Aside from the ambulance, the museum part of the building will feature other pieces related to The King.
This includes the oldest Elvis signature not owned by Graceland and pre-fame childhood toys of The King’s that were passed down to his cousin Billy Smith.
Tickets for the attraction are $14.99 and fans can find out more on the official website here.
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