After Elvis Presley shot to fame in 1956, he moved into the Graceland mansion with his extended family. The King’s illiterate uncle became his head of security and cousin Billy Smith was invited to be part of his Memphis Mafia. The last surviving original member, he knew the star before he was famous and had many intimate private conversations with him, including hours before he died. Billy lived at Graceland with his wife Jo and their sons Joey and Danny, who were childhood friends of Lisa Marie Presley during the 1970s. Her night owl father would sleep all day, so she admitted to being a “terror” on the estate, with staff terrified she could get them fired. The King’s only child would race around the grounds on golf carts with the other Memphis Mafia kids, causing all kinds of havoc. And now Danny has broken his silence and paid tribute to Lisa Marie, following her death two weeks ago.
On his Memphis Mafia Kid YouTube channel, Danny confessed that the Smiths, the cousins of Elvis, were heartbroken by the news of Lisa Marie’s sudden death at just 54 and appreciated all the condolences.
On if they attended the public memorial service at Graceland last Sunday, he said: “We did not go. Actually, me and [my wife] Theresa were up at Mom and Daddy’s and we watched it live streamed. What can you say? I mean it was good. It was a very nice memorial, I thought. If something like that can be good. It might have been a short time those years and were kid teenagers, but believe me it was a lifetime. And I’ll always cherish and have that lifetime inside me. Gonna miss her sure, just like everybody else, love her. However, I want to keep, just like Elvis, her memory and his memory alive with these videos and try to share things with y’all that maybe you didn’t know.”
Danny then said he wanted to share some things about Lisa Marie that fans might not know.
Danny shared: “She loved [frozen sugary drinks called] Slurpees. She used to have a mug that you could freeze and Mama would freeze like a Pepsi and Kool-Aid and different stuff. She loved that slushy type drink. When we were at Palm Springs, 7-Eleven was one of the main places she wanted to go just to get a Slurpee. When were living at Graceland and riding gold carts and stuff, a lot of the Elvis family that we knew pretty well would actually go and get Slurpees from 7-Eleven and bring them to us.
“Lisa was bossy, of course. She loved being Lisa just like Elvis loved being Elvis, as Mama always said. She was bossy, controlling, but she also had the heart of her daddy and she could love in Lisa’s way and let you know that. She was funny, she was fun-loving. Mean as hell. Of course, we all were!”
He then shared how they prank fans who were giving them unwanted attention.
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Danny said: “We were riding in the front lawn of Graceland… and these ladies asked Lisa could we take a picture of you? She said, ‘Yeah’, so they took a picture and she said, ‘Can I see your camera and take a picture of y’all?’ And they handed Lisa the camera and she floorboards the golf cart and we took off! That was just Lisa.”
He added: “It’s always going to hurt and be sad, a sad thing always is when you lose somebody that you love or that you’ve shared some of the greatest times in your life.”
Lisa Marie is now buried in Graceland’s Meditation Garden next to her son Benjamin Keough, who died in 2020 at 27, and near her father Elvis, who died in 1977 aged 42.