Two Recent Celebrity Deaths — The Elvis Connections

Elvis’ exalted position in the entertainment industry made it possible for him to meet many celebrities in his lifetime.  When I run across photographs of Elvis and other stars, I save them in a file for future use.  Sadly, this is usually when the celebrity dies, as in the case of Jimmy Dean and Tony Curtis last year.

Now, we have two more.  Within a few days of each other, both baseball slugger Duke Snider and voluptuous actress Jane Russell passed away.  It should come as no surprise that Elvis had met both of them.

Duke Snider and Elvis

Duke Snider was the power-hitting outfielder for the Dodgers in both Brooklyn and Los Angeles.  There was no information about the timing of Elvis and Duke Snider encounter pictured above.  However, the sideburns resemble those Elvis sported in The Trouble with Girls and Change of Habit, so it had to be around 1968-69.  Snider’s playing career was over by that point.

 

Elvis and Jane Russell

There is no question about the timing of this picture. Jane Russell and Elvis were photographed on June 28, 1957 at Russwood Park in Memphis.  TV star Danny Thomas presented the Shower of Stars show to benefit St. Jude’s Hospital.  Some of the other stars were comedian Lou Costello, actress Susan Hayward, and singer Ferlin Husky.  Here is another shot from that occasion.

 

There must have been at least one other meeting between Jane Russell and Elvis, because this photo is obviously from another time.

You can bet Elvis had seen Russell’s most notorious film, The Outlaw, and remembered her sultry character.  Do you think he might have liked to see Jane Russell a few more times?

              

          

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