Allyson Adams is sharing a great gift with the world.
The daughter of the late television and film star, Nick Adams, has published a book, "The Rebel & The King," that details her father's 1956 trip to Mississippi with his close friend Elvis Presley.
The posthumous publishing of Adams' account is in raw, unedited form, just the way Allyson found the 56-page typewritten manuscript among other treasures in a box of memorabilia related to her father.
"It literally shocked me," said Allyson, during a telephone interview last week. She said it was an extremely emotional moment for her to find something her father had written.
"Most of his writings, and other stuff, was stolen when he died, including the typewriter given to him by James Dean," she said.
"The Rebel & The King" takes the reader on an eight-day whirlwind tour of Elvis Presley's old stomping grounds — from his home, Graceland, in Memphis, Tenn., to his hometown of Tupelo, for his homecoming performance at the 1956 Mississippi-Alabama Fair and Dairy Show.
Adams not only accompanied Presley, he did comedic impersonations on stage to open the show.
Allyson visited Graceland last year, and participated in events during Elvis Week in Memphis this year. She also attended the unveiling of the Elvis Presley statue in downtown Tupelo, held in August.
"That's where I really got the essence of Elvis as a poor boy," Allyson said of her trip. "A poor boy with the faith of a mustard seed."
That essence of Presley also is found in Adams' writing. Here's an example from the chapter The Gospel According to Elvis in "The Rebel & The King:"
“I sincerely believed that someday a miracle would happen and sure enough it did because God saw fit to let it happen. And don’t think that I’m not grateful to him. God answered my prayer so fast that I still don’t know where it all started. I still recall the words, 'All good things come from God.' And if more people when something good happens to them in life and makes them happy or if something is given to them if they would just stop and think and thank God for it and say, 'God, thank you for this wonderful blessing you have bestowed upon me.' Then they would have more good luck and more blessings. That’s my honest, sincere, way of thinking. And if tomorrow, should all my success come to an end, I wouldn’t stop thanking him. And I would go on for the rest of my life telling people what a wonderful blessing he once gave me. This is my way of thinking and the words are coming directly from my heart” — Elvis Presley.
During her trip to Tupelo, Allyson said she met people who remembered Elvis Presley and Nick Adams at the fair 56 years ago, carrying a typewriter around, and telling people that they were writing a book.
Allyson remembers her father as a man who walked and talked fast. She was 7 years old when he died of a drug overdose in 1968, an event that still haunts her.
She said she next plans to focus on her journey in dealing with the mystery of her father's death. The working title of the book is "The Daddy Box."
"I keep hoping someone will come forward with some information," Allyson said. "I think definitely there was something fishy about his death. I know my father didn't kill himself."
Allyson said money, diaries, other things her father wrote, and tape recordings were stolen when he died.
For now, however, Allyson is getting the word out about "The Rebel & The King."
"I also think it would make a great little movie," she said.
Allyson sees the time her father and Elvis Presley spent together as the best of times for the both of them.
"Publishing this book has given me more than I ever thought," Allyson said. "This journey has healed my family."
She says her father's story captures the last glimpse of innocence before the end of an era.
"Elvis is an angel to me," she said. "Because of him I got to see my dad in his best light."