Priscilla Presley & Riley Keough Remember Lisa Marie Presley With Heartbreaking Eulogies At Graceland Memorial Service
22nd January 2023

Lisa Marie Presley’s life and legacy were honored during an emotional memorial service at Graceland.

As you know, the 54-year-old musician passed away on January 12 after going into full cardiac arrest at her home in Calabasas. Now, her family members, including 14-year-old daughter Finley, daughter Riley Keough, half-brother Navarone Garibaldi, ex-husband Michael Lockwood, and mom Priscilla Presley, have gathered with hundreds of mourners and celebrities to say goodbye to Lisa at Graceland on Sunday.

According to Billboard, the memorial service started with the Jason Clark & The Tennessee Mass choir singing Amazing Grace on the front lawn of the Memphis, Tennessee, home. A message written on the program from the Presley family about the service read:

“We would like to express our heartfelt gratitude for the love, compassion and support you have shown our family during this difficult time. We will always be grateful.”

Related: Riley Keough Shares Beautiful Tribute To Mom Lisa

Several celebrities and public figures then came up to speak during the service to honor Lisa, including Priscilla who read aloud a note written by one of her granddaughters. She expressed to the audience:

“I have no idea how to put my mother into words. Truth is, there are too many. Lisa Marie Presley was an icon, a role model, a superhero to many people all over the world, but Mama was my icon, my role model, my superhero — in much more ways than one. Even now, I can’t get across everything there is to be understood or known about her, but as she always said, I’ll do my best.”

The grieving mother also read a poem titled “The Old Soul,” which was written about Lisa Marie.

“In 1968, she entered our world, born tired, fragile, yet strong. She was delicate, but was filled with life. She always knew she wouldn’t be here too long. Childhood passes by, with a glimpse of her green eye, she then grew a family of her own. Then came her second child, leaving her with suspicion — could this be the angel that takes me home? Time, of course, flew by. It was time for a tragedy. She knew it was close to the end. Survivors guilt, some would say, but a broken heart was the doing of her death. Now, she is home where she always belonged, but my heart is missing her love.’”

Becoming visibly emotional, Priscilla continued:

“She knew that I loved her. I fear I would never touch her. But the old soul is always with me. She doesn’t drift above.’ That says it all, and thank you all for being here… Our heart is broken. Lisa, we all love you.”

Afterward, Riley penned a heartbreaking letter in honor of her mom that was read by her husband Ben Smith-Petersen. He said at the service:

“I’m going to read something Riley wrote. A letter to my mama — thank you for being my mother in this life. I am eternally grateful to have spent 33 years with you. I’m certain I chose the best mother for me in this world and I knew that as far back as I remember you and I remember everything.”

The note went on to detail multiple fond memories Riley had growing up with Lisa:

“I remember you giving me baths as a baby and I remember you driving me in my car seat listening to Aretha Franklin. I remember the way you would cuddle me at night, and the way you smelled. I remember you taking me for ice cream after school in Florida. I remember you singing me and my brother lullabies at night. I remember how you would lay with us until we fell asleep. I remember how it felt to be loved by the most loving mother I’ve ever known. I remember how safe it felt to be in your arms. I remember that feeling as a child and two weeks ago on your couch.”

Riley then thanked her mom for “showing me that love is the most important things in this life,” adding:

“I hope I can love my daughter the way you loved me The way you loved my brother and sisters, thank you for giving me heart, strength, empathy, and courage, my sense of humor, my manners, my temper, my tenacity. I’m a product of your heart. My brother is a product of your heart, my sisters are a product of your heart. We are you, you are us…I hope you finally know how loved you were here. Thank you for trying so hard for us. If I didn’t tell you every day, thank you.”

Our hearts just break for the Presley family.

Others who took part in the memorial included Jerry Schilling, Sarah Ferguson, Alanis Morissette, Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan, and Guns N’ Roses singer Axl Rose. Axl said in a speech before playing the song November Rain on the piano:

“I feel like I’m supposed to be texting her like, right now, saying ‘I’m here,’ telling her how wonderful everyone is. I never in a million years imagined singing here and especially under these circumstances. Lisa is loved and missed by many and will continue to be loved by all those whose lives she touched.”

Meanwhile, Alanis performed her song Rest while Billy played To Sheila. In a touching tribute, Sarah told the crowd that she stands “here with great honor because we called each other ‘sissy.’” The Duchess of York then quoted the late Queen Elizabeth II, saying:

“My late mother-in-law said, ‘Nothing that can be said can begin to take away the anguish and the pain of these moments. Grief is the price we pay for love.’ How right she was. We look at Priscilla as a mother to Lisa Marie. We look to Lisa Marie, and say, you lost a son. Mothers losing children – there are no words for it. Today we talk about action and action is the way we can go forward. For Riley, for Harper and Finley, and for the entire family, we march forward in support of you – all of us are with you and we will help you as best we can – if you put out your hand you will be there.”

Our hearts go out to the Presley family on this painful day. You can see the entire memorial service (below):

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