Still The King: Elvis Presley To Receive Presidential Medal of Freedom
Just over 41 years since his death, Elvis Presley will receive a Presidential Medal of Freedom from Donald Trump at a November 16th ceremony.
He's one of seven “distinguished individuals” -- which also include famed baseball star Babe Ruth -- who will posthumously receive the prestigious award.
The Office of the Press Secretary said in a statement that the award is “the Nation’s highest civilian honour, which may be awarded by the President to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavours.”
“Elvis Presley defined American culture to billions of adoring fans around the world. Elvis fused gospel, country, and rhythm and blues to create a sound all his own, selling more than a billion records,” The White House said of the honour.
"Elvis also served nearly 2 years in the United States Army, humbly accepting the call to serve despite his fame. He later starred in 31 films, drew record-breaking audiences to his shows, sent television ratings soaring, and earned 14 Grammy Award nominations. He ultimately won 3 Grammy Awards for his gospel music. Elvis Presley remains an enduring American icon four decades after his death.”
While it's not the first time a musician has been given the prestigious award -- Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder, Gloria Estefan, Diana Ross, Loretta Lynn and Bruce Springsteen were awarded during the Obama administration -- Presley is only the third musician to receive it posthumously, after Meredith Willson and jazz great Count Basie during the Reagan administration.
Apparently, due to the entertainment industry largely being opposed to Trump, for the 2018 ceremony they've instead opted to honour late American icons.