I purchased Sandra’s book (after learning about it from her on Facebook) during Elvis Week, and it was autographed. Dear Diary: Al Elvis Fan Remembers is similar to the Donna Lewis Diaries, but much shorter at 150 pages.
Sandra first met Elvis in 1962 when she was 14 at the Fairgrounds when visiting Memphis from Indiana (although she had family in Baltimore). She sort of met him again in 1972 at Memphian, saw him lots of times at the Gates driving in and out and stopping and saw Elvis five or six times in concert. Sandra was friendly with Charlie Hodge and Harold Loyd. She actually had a big crush on Charlie.
Sandra said she had opportunities to go up to the house many time if she had slept with one of the guys, but her religious beliefs wouldn’t let her. She did go up with Billy Stanton, but refused him once inside. Harold said she was the only girl to go up there and not have sex with one of the guys.
I found Sandra a little wacky claiming she had such a deep connection with Elvis always knowing when he was sick and when he was going to die. Not to mention she fell in love with everyone. Seemed it was her goal in life was to get married. At 28, she was depressed and wanted to die just because she wasn’t married.
Sandra is the first person I have ever heard (or read) speak badly about Linda Thompson, saying she was stuck up. Oddly enough, she liked Priscilla – usually it is the reverse.
One problem I had with Sandra’s book is she got the date of JFK’s assassination wrong. I don’t understand how this can happen? It’s like putting the wrong date for the 4th of July. Sandra wrote the assassination was on November 11th (when it was on November 22nd) and the next entry November 12th everyone was closed because of it.
I really love these fan diary books and just the everyday details of the goings on at the gate – even if some of the stories are a bit far fetched.