Elvis Presley crypt pulled from auction

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Elvis Presley
Image caption,
Presley was briefly interred in the crypt for two months after he died in August 1977

The crypt in which Elvis Presley was first buried has been withdrawn from a Los Angeles auction after protests it should be kept as a shrine.

More than 10,000 fans signed a petition against the sale of the tomb at Forest Hill Cemetery in Memphis, Tennessee.

Julien's Auctions said it would not sell the crypt until the cemetery "finds a plan that best suits the interests of the fans while respecting and preserving the memory of Elvis".

The crypt has been empty since 1977.

Presley was temporarily interred there alongside his mother, Gladys, for two months after he died before being reburied at his Graceland home.

Fans argued on the Elvis Matters website : "Can you imagine visiting the crypt and spend a few moments of silence, while an unknown is buried there? If the crypt is still accessible for fans, that is."

With bids starting at $100,000 (£64,000) the lot was to include the crypt itself, the right to open and close the vault for a burial, a memorial inscription and the use of Forest Hill Cemetery's chapel for a service.

The sale had been due to take place on Sunday.

Fans will still be able to buy other Elvis memorabilia however - the singer's personal telephone, medallion and X-ray of a karate injury are among other items under the hammer.

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