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Elvis Nurse's Book Full of Untold Stories and Never-Seen Photos

Image: Elvis Nurse's Book Full of Untold Stories and Never-Seen Photos
"Taking Care of Elvis: Memories with Elvis as His Private Nurse and Friend," by Letetia Henley Kirk was released on Monday. (Twitter)

By    |   Tuesday, 11 Aug 2015 10:22 AM

Elvis Presley's private nurse, who lived at his Graceland home for over a decade, has released a self-published book about her time with the music legend filled with untold stories and dozens of never-seen-before photos.

"Taking Care of Elvis: Memories with Elvis as His Private Nurse and Friend," by Letetia Henley Kirk was released on Monday. 

"He was not only my patient but a good friend," Kirk, 73, told The Jackson Sun. "That’s why I didn’t want to write a book all these years. I felt like he wouldn’t have written a book about me if it had been the other way around."

Along with her husband and two daughters, Kirk lived at Graceland from 1972 until 1983 and often traveled with Elvis on tour until his death in 1977. She decided to self-publish a book about her former patient after a friend took her to an event during Elvis Week in Memphis last August.

"I realized how hungry the fans are for stories about what life was like during a normal day at Graceland," Kirk said. "They already know the stories about drugs and sex and life on the road. They want to know what Elvis was like at Graceland during his private time. That’s what this book is, light-hearted stories of my memories and experiences with Elvis."

Kirk said she wrote the book, and her sister-in-law typed up the writings. At one time, she talked to publishers about doing the book, but they wanted to add ghostwriters to the project, which she didn't like the idea of.

Kirk said she first met the music legend in 1968, after he came into the clinic where she worked, The Medical Group in Memphis, seeking treatment for saddle sores from horse riding.

Elvis was charmed by Kirk, who told her head-hanging patient, "Elvis, if you talk to me, you look at me."

The singer took a liking to Kirk, and she became his regular nurse. In 1972, she moved to Graceland full time.

"Elvis said he would put a trailer behind Graceland for me and my family to live in so I could take care of him and his daddy and grandmother," Kirk related. "I told him I wasn’t going to be trailer trash for nobody. So he hired my husband, Tommy Henley, to do security and take care of the grounds and keep his toys running. Elvis had his way of getting what he wanted, and I’m glad he did."

Kirk's daughters, roughly 7 and 8 at the time, enjoyed spending time with Elvis’ daughter, then-4-year-old Lisa Marie Presley.

Kirk said she devastated when Elvis began to decline in health, taking a great many prescription pills.

"They came in from everywhere. His access to medications was overwhelming, and you can’t catch them all. There were no street drugs, just prescription drugs, but it was a nightmare. It was just sad," she said.

Kirk said she was in the clinic when her husband called her to inform her of Elvis' death on Aug. 16, 1977.

The Guardian (UK) reported that, in addition to the new book, a new album featuring Elvis' music is currently being put together, "If I Can Dream: Elvis Presley with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra." In addition to the famous orchestra, it will feature vocalists like Michael Bublé, Il Volo, and Duane Eddy.

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Elvis Presley's private nurse, who lived at his Graceland home for over a decade, has released a self-published book about her time with the music legend filled with untold stories and dozens of never-seen-before photos.
elvis, nurse, book, untold, stories, photos
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Tuesday, 11 Aug 2015 10:22 AM
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