Is Elvis Alive? Sightings, Stories & King-Sized Conspiracy Theories

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Left: Elvis Presley in concert circa 1977. Right: Detail of an image purported to be a high-resolution scan of the 'pool house photo' from 1977. Soures: R.D/Images Press/Getty Images; thepresleyassignment.com

On August 16, 1977, Elvis Presley died -- or did he? Almost immediately, the phenomenon of "Elvis sightings" went viral (by '70s standards), with rumors and tabloid cover stories offering "proof" that the King wasn't gone. 

The 42-year-old King of Rock 'n Roll passed away in the master bathroom in his home in Graceland, leaving a generation of fans and admirers in disbelief. Elvis had suffered a clear physical decline in the '70s, but still -- dead at 42? It was hard to accept that a combination of poor diet and drug addiction had taken down the icon. And in fact, some people didn't accept it; to this day, there are people all over the world who believe that Elvis didn’t die, he just had a change of address.

At the time of his death Elvis was back on top thanks to a residency in Las Vegas and a couple of adult contemporary hits in 1975 and 1976, but Elvis-truthers think the King wanted out. He was tired of the fame and hangers on, and most of all tired of being Elvis. What really happened on that fateful summer day in ’77? Did Elvis go to that big honky tonk in the sky, or did he escape Graceland to live the quiet life? Either way, Elvis has left the building.