The Controversy Surrounding Gladys Presley
For decades, rumors have circulated about the drinking habits of Elvis Presley’s mother, Gladys. Some have claimed that she was an alcoholic, while others have argued that she simply enjoyed a drink or two on occasion.
So, what’s the truth? Unfortunately, there is no clear answer. While there is evidence to suggest that Gladys did struggle with alcohol at times, there is also evidence to suggest that she was able to keep her drinking under control.
The Early Years
Gladys Presley grew up in poverty in rural Mississippi. She married Elvis’ father, Vernon, when she was just 17 years old, and the couple had their first child, Elvis, a year later.
During these early years, it’s unclear whether Gladys had any issues with alcohol. Some reports suggest that she was a teetotaler, while others indicate that she may have enjoyed a drink or two on occasion.
The Move to Memphis
In 1948, the Presley family moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where Vernon took a job as a truck driver. It was around this time that Gladys’ drinking may have become more of a concern.
According to some reports, Gladys would often drink while Vernon was away on the road. She would also become increasingly anxious and agitated when he was gone, leading some to speculate that she may have been using alcohol as a way to cope with her loneliness and anxiety.
Elvis’ Success and Gladys’ Health
As Elvis’ music career took off in the mid-1950s, Gladys’ health began to decline. She suffered from a variety of health problems, including hepatitis, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Some have suggested that Gladys’ drinking may have contributed to her declining health. However, there is no concrete evidence to support this theory.
In August 1958, Gladys Presley passed away at the age of 46. The official cause of death was listed as heart failure, although some have suggested that her alcohol use may have played a role.
Despite the rumors and speculation, it’s impossible to say for certain whether Gladys Presley was an alcoholic. What is clear, however, is that she faced a number of challenges throughout her life, including poverty, illness, and the loss of her son.
The question of whether Gladys Presley was an alcoholic will likely never be fully resolved. However, what we do know is that she was a loving and devoted mother who faced her share of struggles throughout her life.
As we continue to remember Elvis and his legacy, it’s important to also honor the memory of his mother and the role she played in his life.