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CONCERT DATE: March 18, 1974. Richmond, VA.

Holler ... Scream ... Have a Fit
by Bernie Ghiselin
The Richmond News Leader
March 19, 1974

Deborah King clutched the white scarf around her neck and staggered about, half lost. Her tears were washing away her eye makeup and her mouth was locked in a smile of amazement.

Her friends shrieked, "Debbie, Debbie" from far off. The house lights were up and the crowd swarmed to the exits and Debbie cried and staggered about.

She was ecstatic and lost and pure floating. Purely afloat.

A few moments earlier she had fought her way to the stage and Elvis Presley had thrown her the scarf. and he had touched her.

Yes, touched her. Her. Debbie. Age 22. Who drove from Prince George again this week to see Elvis. Had hoped. Planned. Got up close. And got touched.

Did you kiss him?
"No. But he touched me."
How do you feel right now?
"Oh great. Great. Oh, I feel wonderful."

She stepped over a low barrier toward the seats where her friends were calling her name and she said, "Nobody's getting this off my neck" and tied her trophy, her talisman more tightly.

In droves came the Debbies and Normas and Marys of nearly every age to squeal and clap and moan as Elvis Presley bumped and groaned his mangroan.

COLISEUM FULL

The Richmond Coliseum was literally packed to the rafters. Every section. Every seat. The audience was obedient and attentive and involved.

Mrs. Joyce Davis, 23, left Kinsale, in Westmoreland County, at 5:30 p.m. yesterday and a half-hour before the show started sat impatiently near the front and said, "I can't believe I got this close."

And Mrs. H.J. Parker, 47, of Mrechanicsville, said "I just like him as person, I suppose. He's down to earth, to me he is," she said.

Mrs. Hazel Pearce, 27, of Petersburg did not bring her husband this time. She said once was enough for him. "I swooned the last time he (Elvis) was here, and I guess I'll swoon this time," she said.

The men in the crowd were seemingly in the roles of stoic chaperons. "My wife dragged me down here," said one man. "I can't believe the price of these tickets".

Does Elvis have sex appeal? "Not to me," said Harvey Roberts, 36, of Chesterfield County. "I'd like to have his damn money. Everybody does. I guess."

A group of women in their early 20s waited excitedly, in row nine. Would they try to get to the stage?

"Yes, definitely," said Carroll Coffey of Richmond. "I've been conditioning all week. Police or no police. I'm going to climb right over them.

"WHO CARES!"

The women were asked whether the fact Elvis is approaching 40 years of age bothered them.

"Who cares?" said one

"He's fantastic," said another. If he was 89 and looked that good we'd come to see him."

Mrs. Norma McGlocklin, 31, a wife and mother, admitted she is a dedicated Elvis fan.

"He's my man," said the vivacious brunette. "My heart is beating so fast I can't stand it. I can talk about Elvis all night."

She wore an Elvis button on her blouse, had just bought an Elvis key chain. At home, her walls are plastered with pictures of Elvis, she said.

She was settling down for her seventh Elvis concert, has all his records, has seen all hi movies and last week took her 9-year-old daughter to see and Elvis at the Coliseum.

"I'm gonna jump up and down and clap and holler and scream like I did Tuesday night and have a fit and I felt so tired when I went home I felt like a truck ran over me" she said.

She knows how many times Elvis has been married, where he lives, where he works, the whole thing. She doesn't have his autograph yet.

But she carries a picture of Elvis in her wallet. In the picture, Elvis looks like he's singing, "Don't Be Cruel."

"I'd like to wipe the sweat off him. I don't care what he's singing." she said.

Courtesy of Francesc Lopez