To say that Elvis Presley lived fast would be an understatement. He really had no choice in the matter. His career caught fire quickly. Then, he burned hot and bright for years to come. Between recording, touring, serving in the military, and acting the King was a busy man. So, he had to live at a pace that would keep up with his massive worldwide success.
However, that speed was not limited to his lifestyle. Elvis Presley liked to go fast no matter what he was doing. This carried over to his vehicles. The King had a collection of fast cars. At the same time, he had plenty of smaller vehicles on which to zip around the grounds of Graceland. For instance, he had several ATVs as well as a golf cart or two. If he needed to make longer treks, Elvis had a private jet. You don’t get much faster than that. But, Presley wasn’t limited to the land and the air. He also liked to get out on the water. So, he had some impressive watercraft as well.
Yesterday, Elvis Presley’s estate posted a photo of the King wearing a sea captain’s hat at the helm of a boat. The caption of the photo talks a little about Elvis’ need for speed.
The caption says that Elvis Presley loved all forms of transportation. He had, “Cars, motorcycles, tractors and, of course, boats in the summertime!”
Elvis Presley on the Water
Elvis Presley had more than one boat. However, the most famous of his fleet was the USS Potomac. Before the King owned the yacht, it was President Roosevelt’s “Floating White House.” First, though, it was a US Coast Guard cutter. So, it had plenty of history before Elvis bought it. Then, he donated the ship to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. They auctioned it off. Later, US Customs confiscated the vessel when it was used in a drug-smuggling operation.
Yachts are great and all but they don’t go too fast. That’s where Elvis Presley’s powder blue speedboat came into play. Elvis Presley Photos reprinted a story the July 11, 1960 edition of the Memphis Press-Scimitar about Elvis’ first time out on the 16-foot speedboat.
The journalist who wrote the article went out on the craft with Elvis Presley and a few others. They cruised around McKellar Lake in Memphis. At one point, another boat clocked them doing almost forty miles per hour across the water. Then, when it was time to take the boat in, they had a bit of an issue.
Elvis Presley sped toward the dock. When they started to get close, he cut the engine and tried to throw it in reverse. However, he couldn’t get it to shift, so they slammed into the dock. According to the reprinted story, Elvis exclaimed, “Well! That’s one way to stop it,” after they made contact.