During a recent question and answer session, Smith and his wife Jo opened up about their estranged relationship with the Presley family. Smith was part of The King’s Memphis Mafia entourage for decades. Both Elvis and his cousin were born in Tupelo, Mississippi before their families later moved to Memphis, Tennessee. Presley’s cousin is eight years younger but spent 34 years of his life in the company of the famous singer before he passed away in 1977.
In fact, Billy and his wife Jo lived on the grounds of Graceland behind the main house for years. Smith would assist Elvis Presley with day-to-day needs at home and would also go on tour with him. While there is no living person that has spent more time with Elvis, Billy and Jo say they have no contact with Priscilla, Lisa Marie, or any other member of the Presley family.
The couple answered fans’ questions recently on their YouTube channel Memphis Mafia Kid. A fan asked if they stay in contact with the Presley family, and if not, why. Billy and Jo say they don’t know exactly why they’ve lost contact with the Presleys.
“Actually no, we don’t. I don’t know why,” Billy says in the video.
“I guess they don’t like us, I don’t know, you’d have to ask them. We haven’t been in contact with any of them,” Jo adds.
Elvis Presley’s Cousin and Former Girlfriend Attend Annual Event For The King
The annual Elvis Presley Tupelo Festival went ahead as planned this year after taking last year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During the June 9 to June 13 event, Presley’s cousin Billy Smith and The King‘s former girlfriend Linda Thompson were in attendance.
The festival takes place in Tupelo, Mississippi where both Elvis and Billy were born. Thompson, a former beauty queen who dated Elvis from July 1972 to late 1976, spoke about her time with Presley at the event. She also opened up about the devastating phone call relaying his death to her.
Even though the famous couple broke up 8 months before Elvis Presley passed, Thompson stayed close to his nine-year-old daughter, Lisa Marie. Following his August 16, 1977 death, Thompson received a heartbreaking call from Presley’s daughter.
“I said, ‘hello’ and she said, ‘Linda.’ I said, ‘hey’, she said, ‘It’s Lisa.’ I said, ‘I know who this is, you little goobernickel.’ It was a pet name Elvis and I had for her,” Thompson explained, according to a Express.co.uk report. “She said, ‘My Daddy’s dead, my Daddy’s dead.’”
“I can’t even tell you what I felt, I was stunned and paralyzed. I said, ‘What? No, he’s not,’” Thompson continued. “She said, ‘Yes he is, yes he is. He’s dead.’ The only thing that brought it to reality was when she said, ‘He’s smothered in the carpet.’ And when she said that, I just threw the phone because I thought, ‘Ok, he’s gone. That’s it. Nobody checked on him.’”