Wayne Newton and the ghost of Elvis
“He was a recluse at the end,” said Newton. “He was a wonderful human being whom I loved dearly as a friend.”
Wayne and Elvis had been friends for many years – since the discovery decades earlier that they were both seeing the same woman, Sandy. Rather than causing trouble between the two young men, the conversation was the start of a lifelong friendship. Wayne was the first person Presley’s father called when Elvis died.
A few months after Presley’s death, Newton was called and requested to play the Las Vegas Hilton…the last place that Elvis had performed.
Newton was working two shows, seven days a week. Some of his performances included an Elvis Presley medley.
One night, he was instructed that the balcony was to be closed for the performances. As Wayne started to sing, the lights, monitors and sound system all went out. Always professional, the performers continued on. At one point, Wayne looked up into the balcony that was supposed to be empty and was surprised to see Elvis backlit and smiling.
Wayne said that Elvis was happy with what he was seeing and hearing. He was at peace. Newton said he felt like it was just the two of them sharing the moment. Shortly after that, the lights and equipment started working again, Elvis was gone and everything was back to normal.
“The truth of the matter is that I saw Elvis that night,” said Newton. “I had received a very special message from a friend that I loved dearly. He was happy with where he was and he wanted me to know he was okay. This is one of the greatest memories that I will ever have.”
Wayne Newton is in possession of a note Elvis scribbled a year before he died that someone had retrieved from his hotel trash can. He wrote about feeling “so lonely sometimes.” He referred to the quiet of the night and his difficulty in sleeping. He pleaded, “Help me, Lord.” Newton’s song “The Letter” was based on this note.
References and additional information:
Celebrity Ghost Stories. Season 7; Episode 1.
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