Elvis Express Radio News
November 16, 2015  -  Chron /  Elvis Express Radio
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In a turn of events that made the teen girls of the world quake with agony, Elvis Presley took leave of his rock idol status and joined the United States Army in March 1958.

Now nearly 60 years later items from that period of Presley’s life are going up for auction.

The items had been in the private collection of Presley’s close friend Sgt. William A. Norwood up until a decade ago when it went onto the market. Now the current owner has placed
it back on the block for sale via RR Auction out of New Hampshire.

On his 22nd birthday in 1957, the King of Rock N' Roll was declared 1-A by the Memphis Draft Board which meant he was physically fit and likely to be drafted sometime in the
following eight months.

Due to his ongoing film work on “King Creole” his date with the green fatigues was delayed somewhat. A deferment was granted for Presley.

After entering training at Fort Hood in Texas in March 1958, Presley was assigned to the 3rd Armored Division in Friedberg, West Germany. He left Fort Hood on September 19,
1958 with his fellow soldiers to ship out to Germany three days later.

Gone were the sideburns and perfect quiff of hair, replaced with a regulation military cut.

According to RR’s Mike Graff, the collection contains seven items related to Presley, his girlfriend Anita Wood, and their relationship with the family of his friend Sgt. William A.
Norwood. There are four photos of Presley and three letters from the knockout Wood to friends.

“Sgt. Norwood was given the assignment of training Presley upon his arrival at Fort Hood, and the two soon became friends. Homesick, Elvis spent much of his time at the Norwood
residence, often with his girlfriend Anita Wood,” auction organizers say.

Also in this auction are a pair of reference recordings for Presley’s film “King Creole” which might fetch upwards of $12,000 from collectors.

When he was in Germany, Presley of course met his future wife Priscilla Beaulieu but he kept in contact with Wood. They continued to date when he came to the United States.
Sadly Presley’s beloved mother Gladys died while he was serving.

Sgt. Elvis Presley exited the army in March 1960 and resumed his usual activities as a global entertainment icon. His time serving Uncle Sam didn’t adversely affect his career as he
thought it would have since we’re all still talking about him today.