Elvis Presley first met Frank Sinatra’s singer daughter Nancy Sinatra when he was discharged from the US Amed Forces in 1960. At the behest of her father, the legendary crooner, she met him off the plane with a gift and Frank’s regards as the King became a civilian. Speaking out about her relationship with Elvis in quotes on her official blog on NancySinatra.com, the These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ hitmaker called him “one of the funniest people ever”.
“His humor was silly and self-deprecating,” she said. “He made fun of himself which is a very endearing quality to have. We did have fun, that’s for sure.”
Elvis and Nancy would go on to star opposite each other in Norman Taurog’s Speedway in 1968, him playing NASCAR racer Steve Grayson and her the agent assigned to keep tabs on him after his gambling habits get him into trouble with the IRS who eventually falls for him.
Looking back on their friendship, Nancy said there was “flirting” but that it was just platonic.
“There was flirting, but just friendly flirting. Actually, we were like The Katzenjammer Kids,” she explained.
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Elvis Presley: Nancy Sinatra first met the King when he was discharged from the Armed Forces in 1960
“We used to ride a bicycle built for two around the studio, the MGM lot.
“Speedway was Elvis at his peak, in his prime,” Nancy said. “He was beautiful.
“This movie and his ‘comeback’ special were his zenith. I mean, how gorgeous was he then? Wow!
“I feel kind of sorry for those who don’t get Elvis,” she added, sharing her praise for the rock ’n’ roll icon. “A little more open-minded study and they would discover a fabulous soul who contributed plenty to the history of American music.
Elvis Presley: Nancy Sinatra starred alongside Elvis in Speedway
“He was the best at what he did and, like Frank, there will never be another to equal him.
“I treasure him. You will never know how much I miss him.”
Elvis’ relationships with women were many and complicated and he married just once, to actress Priscilla Presley.
The pair tied the knot in 1967 and welcomed their daughter Lisa Marie Presley a year later.
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They split in 1972 and were divorced the next year, sharing custody of Lisa Marie.
He then moved on to a four-year relationship with beauty queen Linda Thompson.
It was after his split from Linda that The Wonder of You hitmaker struck up a romance with Ginger Alden.
She spent much of the final year of his life with him at Graceland and he also popped the question, making her his fiancée.
It was Ginger who was there when Elvis died, finding him unconscious on the floor of his bathroom on August 16, 1977.
In her memoir, she recalled: “I stood paralysed as I took in the scene.
“Elvis looked as if his entire body had completely frozen in a seated position while using the commode and then had fallen forward, in that fixed position, directly in front of it.”
The ambulance was called when Ginger realised Elvis wasn’t breathing but, though he was rushed to a nearby hospital, attempts to revive him were unsuccessful.