Hearne: The Eternal Question — Did Elvis Really Leave ‘The Building?’

imagesAbout that celebration of the anniversary of  Elvis Presley‘s death this past weekend…

For most folks 1977 was the year Elvis checked out. Something about too many painkillers, peanut butter and banana sandwiches and falling off the King of Rock N Roll’s bathroom throne at Graceland.

So he’s gone, right? Long gone – 36 years long gone – officially speaking.

Or is he?

Followers of my column in the Star may recall that in 2001 I stumbled onto a Parkville M.D. by the name of Donald Hinton who swore up and down that Elvis was still alive but in hiding. And that Hinton was treating him under the assumed name of Jesse, Elvis’s identical twin brother who died at birth.

There were five people at the time in Hinton’s inner circle who knew the “real truth” about Elvis still being alive and hiding out as Jesse, including his cousin Jerry Presley, a local deck builder and musician who performs nationally as an Elvis tribute band.

Hinton self-published a small book outlining the story of Jesse entitled, “The Truth About Elvis Aron Presley In His Own Words.”

Elvis Book HintonAmazon described Hinton’s book – that now sells for from $283 to $725 new – thusly: 

“It presents the events of Elvis Aron Presley’s last 24 years as told to him by ‘The King’ himself through a collection of handwritten letters and cards, telephone conversations and photos since his death in 1977.

“Dr. Hinton risks his reputation and livelihood to bring this astonishing story to print because, he says, “Jesse” felt it was time to tell his fans the truth. Elvis’ disciples and skeptics alike should welcome this opportunity to finally establish or lay to rest the truth about Elvis’ death or life.”

Heavy stuff right?

I covered Dr. Hinton’s travails extensively.

“He’s about to come out,” Jerry Presley told me at the time. “That’s what the book’s about. There’s so much inside stuff that can’t be talked about right now.”

Falderal, countered Todd Morgan, Elvis Presley Enterprises director of media.

“You could have a bonfire that could be seen galaxies away if you piled up every book or article, every falsehood ever written about (Elvis),” Morgan said. “There wouldn’t be a lot left to read comparatively if you eliminated the falsehoods.”



Unfortunately, Hinton’s claims netted him far more than fame than fortune.

The media attention landed the Parkville psychiatrist on the hot seat with Missouri Board of Healing Arts and the Missouri Attorney General‘s office who also wanted to know “the truth” about Elvis – but a different truth.

Word at the time was they were “reviewing” the good doctor’s claims and looking at other issues, including what happened to any gifts fans may have intended for “Jesse” and prescriptions that may have been written to him and sent out of state.

And as for any gifts, earmarked for Elvis, “All I know is they all get sent” to Jesse, Jerry Presley told me at the time “(Dr. Hinton) doesn’t have ’em.”

The latest?

Hinton and company have long since gone underground, and while in theory “Jesse” is still alive and well at age 77, it’s been years since Hinton was disciplined and dropped out of sight. And years since the talk of Elvis as Jesse was seriously last broached.

Which doesn’t by any means mean that Elvis is not still alive.

Stand by for Part 2 of my update tomorrow.

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13 Responses to Hearne: The Eternal Question — Did Elvis Really Leave ‘The Building?’

  1. Orphan of the Road says:

    A high school friend was (maybe is???_ a patient of the good doctor. And a believer in the guy. Wish I’d kept the emails where he let me in on this secret.

    I’ve got his email is you want to contact him.

  2. chuck says:

    Thats not Elvis, it is Dic Van Dyke.

    Is that the picture of the kid Dick Van Dyke pulled out of his burning car?

    Where are the rest of Dick Van Dyke’s clothes?

    Why was that little kid in Dick Van Dyke’s car?

    Is Dick Van Dyke Jerrry Sandusky’s brother?

    This Elvis story is an enigma in an enigma.

  3. I don’t find it too far-fetched that a celebrity of that magnitude (him or Michael Jackson) could fake their deaths in order to live a life of seclusion. I’m sure it came with a hefty price (and government connections) and a drastic change of lifestyle. Can you imagine living the life of celebrity, let alone, a superstar? I’m sure you couldn’t even take a dump without someone trying to snap a photo or your security detail closely monitoring you. I’m not saying I actually researched the King and came across some compelling evidence that he still lives, but believe it’s plausible. We commoners don’t know how much power these stars wield in order to do such a thing.

  4. kansas karl says:

    Mojo Nixon – (619)239-King


    Well, I want to know,
    Man, is Elvis Alive?
    Yeah, I’ve got to know,
    Man, is Elvis Alive?
    Hey, I’ve gotta cut through
    All this tabloid jive.

    Well, I listened to the tapes
    of the woman on Larry King
    I’d give anything just to hear him sing again.
    Elvis, pick up that phone
    and give me a ring.

    C’mon now, Elvis. Won’t you call me?

    Now, Elvis. This is a real number.
    It don’t cost a whole lot to call.
    Now some of you folks out there might know where Elvis is,
    you can call too and tell me.
    I ain’t talking ’bout the Bat-Phone.
    It’s the E-Phone.

    Danny Partidge, Wayne Newton, and Liberace.
    I don’t wanna get no calls from none of you fools you see.
    Only Tom Jones and the big E can call me.
    Yeah, you know the number.

    Play that thing, man.

    (1st Instrumental Break)

    Some people say you live on an island
    With Marylin Monroe.
    And every night Jim Bo Morrison
    Puts on a great big show.
    And when you get sick,
    You call up Dr. Nick

    Elvis, if you’re coming back
    You’ve gotta do it right.
    No Vegas, no movies,
    Just leather, black and tight.
    If I can dream, Mystery Train
    Come on Elvis, give me a ring at…

    (2nd Instrumental Break)

    I’m gonna get Lisa Marie to marry me.
    I’m gonna get Lisa Marie to marry me.
    Then I’ll call Elvis my great big daddy.
    Hey, you wanna know when the wedding is? Call me Elvis at…

    Operators are standing by.
    Give me a call, man.
    Yeah, if the phone’s busy, try again.

    No, I don’t wanna talk to Sonny.
    I sure don’t want to talk to Lamar.
    Albert Goldman, kiss by butt.

    E-P, Phone Home.
    I said,…
    E-P, Phone Home.
    Give me a call, Elvis.
    Now, I won’t tell The Colonel
    Or the Weekly World News either, man. Come on, call me boy.

    (Phone rings)
    Say what?
    You want me to do what?
    Get Priscilla in the white underwear and the big black mascara
    and the hair sticking way up high.
    Then then you’ll come running fast?
    Say you’re going to get in the big Cadillac and see me?
    Oh Elvis I’m gonna get Priscilla for you boy! Whoo, yeah!


    How, how how.
    (Scatting Elvis style)

    • admin says:

      Nice one, Kansas Karl

      Did you know that I was the promoter who brought Mojo (and Skid) to KC all those times. They crashed at my house in Fairway until they could afford to get a room at that little hotel in Westport by Chilli’s.

      Last time he was in I was walking toward the hotel when Mojo lobbed a water balloon at he out of his second floor room window.

      Last I checked he had a really funny show on satellite radio

  5. Jesse looks more like a drunk, strug-el-ing Joe Namath than he looks like the Big E. Good Grief.

  6. Rick Nichols says:

    Yeah, and JFK is still alive, too, hooked up to life support in the penthouse of a downtown Dallas hotel. No, I’m afraid that “the King” has been returned to sender, the real King and Creator of the universe.

  7. Ann-Margrock says:

    He’s dead. AND OSWALD SHOT HIM. Somebody call Crazy Larry (Sells).

    I’m sure Crazy Larry has big plans for November…you should follow up for the sheer amusement value.

    • admin says:

      Like I’m going to miss that one?

      Of course he does. Starting with his new book that I wrote about a few months back.

      Oh there’ll be more alright

  8. Nick says:

    Funny you bring it up; we were just talking about Elvis.

    We’re headed out to Breck’ soon and so were discussing the details surrounding the trip, which eventually led to our girls bringing up highlight’s of last summer’s vacation. Without a doubt the pinnacle of the sojourn for them was meeting Elvis himself; we ran across him pumping gas at the Rocky Top Shell station outside of Clinchmore, TN, last summer.

    It was my youngest girl who called him out. He was humming something familiar while the gas filled the tank and she suddenly screamed: “”I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry , “I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry!!!! Elvis!!!!” By gawd if she wasn’t right.

    The old fart looked spooked, but just for a second. Then he gave my little girl that same ol’ sly grin and I swear there was a Technicolor sparkle in his eye. He said “Now how’s a young thing like you know that song, lil’ darlin’?” Of course my youngest just bubbled and burbled and gushed absolute nonsense ’til The King threw her a wink.

    After the tank was full and I’d paid him Elvis started slowly back to gas station’s office but stopped, looked over his shoulder at my girl and then suddenly did his famous ‘toe-up-and-hip-cock’ move at her. Well, that just about made her week!

    After I had helped him into the office — Elvis has more than a touch of arthritis (“Ol’ Arthur came to visit ’bout twenty years ago and never left.” ) and pretty much threw his back out doing that hip move — it was all the girls talked about until we bedded down for the day outside of North Charleston.

    Yep – Clinchmore, TN.

    Bet the ol’ fart’s still there, pumping High Test, flirting with the young girls and just occasionally throwing his back out.

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