As most of you know that I'm a huge Elvis fan one of millions throughout the world but I'm afraid the news I'm about to post will see him lose one or two.. Read on .....
Elvis Presley may be remembered as a rocker with a penchant for Baptist
hymnals, but the King also had major Jewish lineage. According to a
biography, "Elvis and Gladys", the Memphis musician was Jewish through
matrilineal descent. And, he was proud of it.
In Elaine Dundy's 1995 book "Elvis and Gladys", she wrote about the
singer's relationship with his mother, Gladys Love Smith. Gladys' maternal
grandmother was Martha Tacket, also Jewish.
According to the book, Elvis knew about his Jewish lineage, but his
parents told him to keep it quiet, fearing an anti-Semitic backlash in the
1940's Mississippi. Nevertheless, Elvis was known to wear a Chai necklace
and carry a yarmulke in his jacket pocket. He buried his mother under a
gravestone engraved with a Star of David.
"After his mother died, Elvis personally designed his beloved mother's
gravesite, which included a Star of David on Gladys Love Presley's tombstone,"
Dundy wrote in her book. 'He made the decision to honor his Jewish
heritage. Something his mother was proud of and acknowledged to Elvis at a
very early age."
In 2002's "Elvis: In Search of Elvis Presley’s Jewish Roots,” writers Jonathan Goldstein and Max Wallace wrote about Elvis’ generosity to Jewish institutions.
"One day the Memphis Jewish Welfare sent a delegation to Graceland to see him
and ask if he would contribute. At Christmas every year, he donated $1,000 to a number of Memphis charities and one of them was the Memphis Hebrew Academy. So, the Jewish Welfare thought "maybe he would contribute
something" the book reads. They explained to him that they take care of poor Jews and orphans. Elvis excused himself for a minute. When he came back, he handed the leader of the delegation a check. They didn't know what to expect. They thought $1,000 would be helpful. When they looked at the check, it was for $150,000. The equivalent of more than a million dollars today. Elvis was known to donate huge amounts to the American/Israeli fund as it was known then
Looks like the King knew the meaning of tzedakah.