Lisa Marie Presley's family and friends attended a public memorial for the singer at Graceland in Memphis Sunday morning. Her mother, Priscilla Presley, read a note, while her son-in-law, Ben Smith-Petersen, read a note written by her daughter, actress Riley Keough. The memorial was held a few days after Presley, the only child of Elvis Presley, was laid to rest next to her son, Benjamin Keough.
Priscilla held back tears as she read a note, written by one of her grandchildren to Presley, reports the Commercial-Appeal. "I have no idea how to put my mother into words," Priscilla, 77, read from her phone. "Truth is there are too many. Lisa Marie Presley was an icon, a role model a superhero to many people all over the world." She also thanked everyone for their support during another difficult time for the Presley family. "Our heart is broken, Lisa. We all love you," Priscilla added.
Keough, 33, attended the ceremony. Her husband, Smith-Petersen, read a prepared statement titled "A Letter to My Momma." She thanked Presley for being her mother. "I'm 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 can remember you," Keough wrote. She recalled how Presley inspired her and her brother Benjamin to love music at an early age.
"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," Smith-Petersen read. "I remember that feeling as a child and I remember it two weeks ago on your couch. Thank you for showing me that love is the only thing that matters in this life."
The memorial was appropriately filled with music from Presley's close friends. The Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan performed "To Sheila," which brought many to tears, notes Entertainment Tonight. Alanis Morissette performed "Rest," while Guns N' Roses' Axl Rose played "November Rain" from behind a piano.
Sarah Ferguson shared a poem titled "A Tribute to Their Children," written by the late David Frost's son George Frost for his father's 2014 funeral. Pastor Wayne Hunt delivered his eulogy at the start of the ceremony. Former Memphis Mayor A.C. Warton quoted Elvis during his speech, saying, "The city loved her sweet, loved her tender, and loved her truly." The celebrity was live-streamed on Vimeo.
Presley was rushed to the hospital on Jan. 12 after going into full cardiac arrest at her Calabasas, California, home. She died hours later at the hospital, two days after she made her final public appearance at the 80th Golden Globe Awards. She was 54. Presley was laid to rest on Jan. 19 at Graceland, next to her son, Benjamin, who died by suicide in July 2020.
"Priscilla Presley and the Presley family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Lisa Marie," the Presley family said on Jan. 12. "They are profoundly grateful for the support, love, and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time." The family has asked fans to make a donation to The Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation in Presley's memory.