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Elvis Bus Taking Care Of Business

Reported by: Wayne Hereford
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Updated: 1/24 10:38 pm
TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA)-- In 1976, Elvis Presley reportedly wrote a check to help pay for a bus for his traveling back-up group the Stamps Quartet.

That bus was the subject of a very long and drawn out legal battle until this week, and the bus now belongs to a Tupelo businessman.

"Right here, hanging on the wall, you'll see that this is an actual copy of the check that Elvis Presely signed and gave to J.D. Sumner on July 6th 1976," said Daphene Hendricks, a spokesperson for Transport Trailer Services of Tupelo.

And that, Hendricks says, was a down payment on the bus for J.D. Sumner and his Stamps Quartet.

The bus now rests securely in the garage at Transport Trailer Services of Tupelo where the owner, Larry Michaels, finally was told by the Mississippi Court of
Appeals this week that it's his bus to keep.

"Is been a long, long, disagreement on who owns the bus, and who was to pay for the restoration, and who was to pay for hiring the wrecker service to go to upstate Washington to pick it up," she continued.

Hendricks says that in 2009, a Tupelo Elvis fan named Billy Kinnard asked Michaels to pick up the bus, which was rotting away in Washington state.

"After picking it up and restoring it, Mr. Kinnard wanted to take possesion of the bus. There was a lot of money tied up in it," she said.

The bus went up for public auction after numerous appeals.

"And, Mr. Kinnard signed and agreed that the bus could be publicly auctioned," said Hendricks.

Larry Michaels, Hendricks' boss, was the only bidder she says and he took possession. But, then something else happened.

"Then after that Mr. Kinnard appealed again and said that he was incompetent, because of the medication he was taking, to sign that paperwork at the time," Hendricks explained. 

But a judge disagreed. Hendricks says while Elvis never owned the bus, but did drive it once for the quartet.

There are plenty of rememberances throughout the vehicle of Elvis and the quartet.

There's even a video put together by the company to tell the entire story. 

The letters TCB are everywhere, and it stands for "taking care of business," one of Elvis' favorite slogans.

Hendricks says the company is considering using it as a tour bus to run between Tupelo and Memphis for Elvis fans.
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