Priscilla Beaulieu would become Mrs. Presley on May 1, 1967 in Las Vegas, Nevada. On that day, she married Elvis Presley, the most iconic entertainer of our time. As fans can imagine and have long read of, such a union to such a man couldn’t come without its challenges.
“My God, I had to learn everything,” Priscilla tells PEOPLE in their latest issue. “Women gravitated to him, so I would be nervous when he had to go places alone. I would even go with him to get his teeth cleaned!” she reveals.
But it wasn’t just women who were after Elvis. His immense fame, wealth, and eclectic personal life put multiple targets on his back.
“I always had an eye on him because everyone in the world was after him,” Priscilla continues.
But to be Priscilla Presley was worth it. Beyond worth it. “I was always ready to greet him at the door and pamper him,” she recalls for the trade. “I loved taking care of Elvis very much. I loved tending to him. I loved feeding him.”
The two even had their own “love language,” or “baby talk,” as Priscilla calls it. “You have to have your own language when you have that many people around,” she says.
All in all, Priscilla and Elvis Presley were truly happy for a long time. “It was a good life. It was different, but it was ours.”
But every fairy tale has its darker moments. Priscilla remembers vividly the odd bouts of anger Elvis would go through. While they were not directed at her, they were shocking nonetheless.
The Highs & Lows of Elvis & Priscilla Presley
“If he saw somebody he didn’t like on the TV, he’d get his gun out and blow it up,” she recalls. Elvis would famously ask his father, Vernon Presley, to go fetch another television – an act Priscilla would often witness. Vernon never threw out the old televisions, either, and some can still be seen at Graceland today – complete with bullet holes.
Yet from the moment she first laid eyes on Elvis, Priscilla says she knew she “had to keep him.”
“I wanted to go places with him. I would cry if I couldn’t be around him,” Presley recalls. The couple famously met when Priscilla was but 14-years-old. Their questionable relationship held through Elvis’ tour with the U.S. Military. Then, they would marry at ages 32 and 21.
Priscilla gave birth to their only child, Lisa Marie Presley, in 1968. By all accounts, their family life together was beyond loving in her infancy. Yet Elvis’ fame was beginning to outlive him. His choices became more reckless, until there was no choice but to file for divorce in 1973.
This isn’t what Priscilla chooses to focus on in remembrance, however. She remains Priscilla Presley, after all, even in her second marriage to Marco Garibaldi.