Elvis is renowned around the world for his music, outlandish jumpsuits and a performance style like no other man. However, something he is perhaps less well-known for is his generosity to others. He gave gifts ranging from Cadillacs to diamond encrusted Rolexes. His gifts were given as a sign of his love to those around him, but they were often spur of the moment acts too.
But it was not just in his famous life where Elvis was generous. In fact, from an early age he was known to give away his new toys to children he felt were less fortunate than himself; which could be described as an unusually generous action for a young boy. This characteristic took hold, and from here on this he gave many more gifts in his life, when he rose into a star of legendary proportions.
This may not have been apparent to his fans, as throughout his prolific career, much of Elvis’ generosity was unknown to the general public. However, behind closed doors he supported everyone from friends and family to total strangers. He paid people’s hospital bills, bought wheelchairs for those in need, and paid off others debts. He even paid for the weddings of two of his friends, and contributed $30,000 towards their homes. Aside from this, Elvis bought around 150 cars for his friends, who became known as the ‘Memphis Mafia’.
He was known to use his fame and popularity to host shows and benefits that would raise money for causes he was passionate about. When he returned to the US after serving in the army for two years, he hosted a charity benefit in Hawaii which raised $65,000 for the Memorial at Pearl Harbor for the U.S.S Arizona. Prior to this, the fund was struggling, but after Elvis’ contribution the memorial was able to open later that year.
Today, Elvis Presley’s philanthropic endeavours are survived by the Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation and the Elvis Presley Endowed Scholarship Fund at the University of Memphis. Now, the memory of the King lives on through his music, persona and kindness. Even today there are numerous Elvis collectibles available to buy on online stores to treat your family and friends who want to treasure the memory of the King himself.