Elvis’s Career in the Army
Elvis Presley, one of the most distinguished figures in the history of rock and roll, received a draft notice on December 20, 1957 and was inducted into the U.S. Army in 1958.
Before he went into the army, Presley was the crown prince of rock ‘n’ roll, with 21 Billboard Top Ten songs and seven films under his belt. As consolation for 14 months of active duty, Presley received a salary of $78 a month, a number that certainly did not reflect his value.
Duties and Rank
Presley’s Army job was to be a part of a special services unit, that provided entertainment for wounded soldiers. At the same time he rose to the rank of Sergeant. He beagn as a Private E-2, eventually reaching the highest rank of Sergeant E-5.
Elvis was stationed in Germany from March 1958 to March 1960, and during that time he was accompanied by an entourage which included his father, his manager, his personal physician, two bodyguards and two other friends. He received permission to have them as company, which is quite rare for a low-ranked soldier.
During his time in the Army, Presley made some significant accomplishments, including:
- Performing for his fellow soldiers: Presley was able to continue performing as an artist during his military service, performing over 300 concerts for his fellow soldiers, as part of the USO Caravan tour.
- Receiving awards for his service: Presley received two Army Achievement Medals for his exemplary service.
- Reaching the rank of Sergeant: Presley was honorably discharged in 1960 with the rank of Sergeant.
Elvis Presley’s career in the Army was a small but significant part of his life, and it is a testament to his character and love of country.