his viral anecdote claims that during a concert in 1975, Elvis was informed that there was a blind girl in the crowd. The musician stopped the show to bring the girl up on stage where they had a heartfelt exchange. After the show, Elvis was so moved by the little girl’s story that he gave her a $50,000 check and a concert ticket (plus travel expenses) to every one of his future shows.
There’s no evidence to support this version of events. This is a modern-day work of fiction that is far removed from any firsthand accounts of Presley’s interactions with blind fans.
A spokesperson for Graceland, the Elvis Presley Museum in Memphis, Tennessee, told us that after checking with the archive team and various long-term staff members, they could provide “no record of this happening.”
The earliest version of the claim that Elvis gave a blind girl a $50,000 during a concert that we could find comes from a Facebook post in November 2016. That post, which makes no mention of a source for this information, starts with a brief introduction and then supposedly reproduces a verbatim conversation Elvis had with this little girl. The post ends with the claim that Elvis gave her a $50,000 check:
This version of the “Elvis and the blind girl” story is an exaggeration of similar story about Elvis and a blind girl that dates back to at least 2012.
A 2012 post on iheartelvis.net (which notes that this story has been around “for years” before they wrote about it) relays a much simpler story behind this photograph. In this version, Elvis simply had a brief conversation with a blind girl before giving her a scarf. This version makes no mention of a $50,000 check. Interestingly, this story from 2012 specifically notes that Elvis “kept the microphone away from his mouth” so nobody could hear what they were talking about.
That version of the story reads:
During the July 20, 1975 show, between songs Elvis was joking around and giving out scarves when he noticed a little girl standing on the far left of the stage. He walked over and knelt down on one knee in front of her. Realizing she was blind, Elvis held her hands and spoke to her for a few minutes. The audience could not hear as he kept the microphone away from his mouth. He then kissed his scarf and touched both her eyes with it. When he was finished he took the scarf and held it to the child’s face. The little girl stood there with complete confidence in what Elvis was doing. The girl had been blind since birth.
This 2012 anecdote, however, also appears to be an embellishment of the original story. We found a review of Elvis’ July 20, 1975 concert and it makes no mention of this incident. The review does state that several young fans lined up to meet Elvis, and that the musician gave them all scarves — something that he regularly did during his concerts, especially during his later years — but it does not mention a blind fan or a $50,000 check.
Mary Dissen’s wrote in her review of the concert for the Norfolk Ledger-Star: