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Between 30,000 and 40,000 people gathered at Graceland in Memphis on Monday to commemorate the 34th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death. He died on Aug. 16, 1977.
Bill Rowe was the first person in line for the memorial, arriving at 2:30 a.m. He told the Baltimore Sun it was his 20th time being in the first spot.
“I had a mixed childhood. Sometimes I had friends, at other times I didn’t. When I really didn’t think I had any friends, there was Elvis,” Rowe told the newspaper.
Later in the night, he was joined by thousands others holding lit candles.
“As a kid I drove my folks nuts on which Elvis t-shirt to wear every day. Then when I go ‘which button’, my dad said, ‘just put them all on.’ So I’ve been collecting them since 1964…and I put patches on the back because it got painful when I sat down,” Ann McClain tells the Baltimore Sun.
Elvis’ daughter, Lisa Marie, sent a message thanking fans and announcing she would join them next year, on the 35th anniversary.
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