A procession took place for fans after the memorial so that they could view Ms. Presley’s headstone, where they were invited to leave flowers or other offerings.
As the service ended, Barbara Hawkins, who drove nine hours from Houston with three other self-described Elvis fanatics, stood in line to visit Ms. Presley’s grave.
“She was our last real link to Elvis by blood,” said Ms. Hawkins, a jewel-encrusted Elvis pendant hanging from her hat. “She just felt like family to us Elvis people, and we’re just shocked that she’s gone too soon.”
Though Ms. Presley spent most of her life in California, where she enjoyed the status of a major celebrity but struggled to distinguish herself as a star in her own right, she maintained ties to her hometown with frequent visits to Graceland, her childhood home. Her most recent visit was this month, for a four-day celebration of what would have been Elvis Presley’s 88th birthday.
For Ms. Presley’s memorial service, Graceland’s 450-room hotel, a separate property on its grounds, sold out “immediately,” said Kevin Kane, the chief executive of Memphis Tourism, and hotels near the museum and Beale Street, where musicians such as Elvis Presley and B.B. King recorded their music, were “seeing an uptick in last-minute reservations for the weekend.”
Charlie Vergos Rendezvous, a beloved downtown Memphis barbecue restaurant, often feeds big groups of tourists going to Graceland. Dean Carayiannis, the longtime manager whose mother attended high school with Elvis, said the restaurant was no busier than usual on Saturday, “but the Presleys keep bringing people in.”
“Elvis and his family brought a lot to Memphis — a lot of notoriety, a lot of good will,” he said.
Graceland staff members had become accustomed to welcoming fans and mourners since Elvis Presley’s death in August 1977. That evening, more than 1,000 people kept vigil outside Graceland. Solemnity turned into panic when fans tried to charge the gates of the mansion and the cemetery.