Kissing Elvis story makes international headlines
Posted by : November 10, 2012| On :
Monitor Staff Writer
MABANK–Mabank’s Groom and Son’s marketing director Margie (Hollis) Crawford knew her life had changed forever when she was just 5 years old.
Crawford’s mother dressed her in a beautiful white dress and leather shoes, curled her hair and drove her to a nearby train station.
Not to take the young Crawford for a trip, but to meet the King himself, Elvis Presley.
Presley had just returned from military service and was riding the train from Memphis to Hollywood to begin filming “G.I. Blues,” in 1960. Prior to departure, he stepped outside the Pullman coach car to greet a mob of fans.
Crawford’s mother, Margaret Howard, loved rock and roll and especially Elvis. Young Crawford remembers standing by the record player for hours listening and dancing to Presley’s hits.
Although still young, Crawford knew that trip to see Elvis was a one-in-a-lifetime opportunity and a day she would never forget. What she didn’t know is how the story would turn into an international phenomenon 40 years later.
When Crawford and her mother arrived at the station, Elvis was standing on the back of the traincar signing autographs. When fans began pulling on his jewelry and clothes, Elvis backed away and looked up, catching his first glimpse of the young girl dressed in white.
He asked her mother to pass the little girl to him and without hesitation she handed her daughter to Elvis Presley, forever making history.
Since then, Crawford’s life has never been the same. After a brief tour of the train car, being photographed kissing Elvis and corresponding with the King until she was a teenager, Crawford still remembers how special those few moments were.
The story died down and was forgotten by most until late October, when a Dallas Morning News journalist accidently stumbled upon the photo of the two and began searching for the little girl.
After receiving a letter in the mail asking if she was the little girl in the photo, she agreed to give an interview.
“My first thought when I read the letter was is this real?” she said.
After her story and photo appeared in the Dallas Morning News Oct. 28, and made its way through newspapers, magazines, television and social media sites, Crawford has found herself the subject of many international headlines.
“The story has made it to Australia, Denmark, Germany, Sri Lanka and the Netherlands and even a television station in the Rio Grande,” Crawford said.
“I’ve been asked for my autograph, my picture and someone even wanted their picture taken with me,” Crawford says of the recent publicity she is receiving.
“Before this October, I couldn’t find my name on Google. Now, my name shows up hundreds of times,” she added.
Crawford was never the kind of person to talk much about her meeting with the King.
“It’s personal, he was just considered a member of the family,” she said.
Presley sent Crawford and her family many letters and Christmas cards but most have been lost throughout the years from moving or old age.
“This is the only letter I have left,” Crawford said as she held it up with a smile on her face.
That 1963 handwritten letter on plain white paper is estimated to be worth $5,000 today.
“I don’t think I would ever sell it, it’s too personal and special,” Crawford said.
Crawford’s family has been affected by all the publicity as well. Her mother, fiance and 20-year old daughter all think the attention to the story is great.
“It’s pretty cool,” fiance Jack Bynum said, of the photo being liked hundreds of times on various web sites. Bynum and Crawford met on a blind date 10 years ago and have been together ever since.
Crawford said she only saw the King perform once in Las Vegas when she was 15. “It was standing room only and was too crowded to see anything,” she recalls of the event.
“My favorite Elvis songs are Love Me, Blue Christmas and How Great Thou Art,” Crawford said.