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No 'Elvis Presley Airport'

March 02, 2012 | Other

Despite a petition, despite several requests, despite growing pressure on the Memphis Airport Authoroties, the 'Elvis Presley Airport' name switch is not likely to happen. Marty Lacker just got a very clear letter from Larry Cox the Director of the Memphis airport regarding the new campaign.

The letter, published on the EER Website, states: "There are many people, Elvis Presley, Martin Luther King Jr., Danny Thomas, Fred Smith, E. W. “Ned” Cook and others, that have had major impacts on Memphis who are worthy to be considered if it is ever determined that the airport should be named for a person. The Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority Board of Commissioners have determined that the airport’s name should remain Memphis International Airport. Elvis Presley and the other distinguished individuals are recognized in other ways by the airport and the community." 

Elvisguitarman wrote on March 02, 2012
Once again, Memphis is not giving Elvis the proper respect due to him. He, via his fans, bring MILLIONS of dollars to Memphis' economy every year. The other notables mentioned by Mr. Cox do not. Memphis treated EP shabbily while he was alive and has continued to do for the past 35 years. Memphis -- shame on you!
markdouglas wrote on March 02, 2012
a disgrace elvis gave so much to memphis and the world not to go ahead with this defies belief. especially when liverpool have the john lennon airport
Monster wrote on March 02, 2012
Sounds like a cop out to me, people playing at politics. There are a lot of notable Memphians but the only person on that list who could even compete with Elvis for the honour of having the airport named after him is MLK. But he is more associated with Atlanta, Georgia and his main connection with Memphis is that it's where he was so tragically assassinated. Fred Smith founded FedEx so name a post office after him if you want (lol). I struggled to find much info on EW "Ned" Cook so I would argue that he hasn't had quite the same international impact as Elvis. There are lots of good reasons to visit Memphis of course besides Elvis but as we are talking about people here then if there's one Memphis personality who has caused more people to travel through Memphis International Airport I'd like to hear who that is.
Hans Otto wrote on March 02, 2012
It is obvious that the Memphis Airport Authoroties never will name the main airport after Elvis. However, their official justification for not considering this option is that there are too many equivalent candidates. This is a lame excuse. There will of course always be various candidates for such an honor. This is in itself not a good reason not to select one final candidate. Secondly, these other names the Airport Authorotis spokesperson mentions does not at all match neither the fame and importance of Elvis as a symbol for Memphis. We're talking about the international airport, and an avetage foreigner have not even heard about Fred Smith, Danny Thomas, nor Ned Cook. As for the only acctual famous alternative to Elvis, Martin Luther King Jr., he was born and burried in Atlanta, Georgia, and spent most of his political carrier in Alabama. Luther King Jr. main link to Memphis is the tragic fact that he was shot there in 1968. He was in no way a part of Memphis' history for almost 30 years as Elvis was. The Airport Authorotis guys are obviously lacking both historical perspective, logical ability and honesty.
Lefty wrote on March 03, 2012
I'd be okay with honoring Elvis by renaming the airport, but is that a really big deal? Elvis is everywhere you look in Memphis already. I'd be just as happy if they gave the honor to B.B. King or Jerry Lee Lewis. At least they're alive and thus able to appreciate the recognition.
EinVegas wrote on March 03, 2012
Memphis should name the airport after Elvis Presley. If it was not for Elvis... Memphis would be dead. Does 600,000 people go to Memphis for The Civil Rights museum, or Beale St... No They go to ELVIS PRESLEY BLVD. I have been to Memphis over 50 times... not once did I go for any other reason then E.P. WAKE UP MEMPHIS
Supercapitalista wrote on March 03, 2012
Memphis-Shelby County Authority Board of Commissioners, are you kidding me?! If we can name our airport in New Orleans after Louie Armstrong, you can certainly name yours after the greatest music legend of all time. Especially, since he delivers so many tourists to your city. I doubt anybody comes to New Orleans because of Armstrong, but Elvis sends countless human beings your way. Shouldn't this board have a minimum IQ threshold greater than 50 points for members to qualify?
tommyboo wrote on March 03, 2012
Had this idea been proposed fifteen, twenty, or thirty years ago it would not have met any resistance. But too many years have gone by and Elvis influentials have been replaced by less influenced people shall we say. I had a strong feeling that the idea would not have received full support. It would help if a catchy song is written on this issue and performed and released by a popular artist today. Judging by the reisistance this issue met, it would take something along those lines to shake up the people on the board. This is injustice and it must be counteracted. Memphis is what it is today because of Elvis Aaron Presely. And those people know it.
Cruiser621 wrote on March 03, 2012
Agreed. Way too many other historic personalities besides Elvis.
Natha wrote on March 04, 2012
Generally airports like to expose their identity towards the public they address. So obviously local politics are more important than the overall vision. So the decision is made on the base of the village and not the global village.
hillbillycatlover wrote on March 04, 2012
tommyboo, yes, it was proposed many times before, even by me in 2007 direictly to the airport authority in writing and and got the same response. Too bad the main terminal is not named after him; it is named after Danny Thomas, who, of course should have some tribute there as well because of the wonderful work being done at St. Jude's. I recommend the area Elvis used for the Lisa Marie jet be named after him. No one seems interested in that either.
TCB1974 wrote on March 04, 2012
Personally, I'm not overly concerned whether they name the airport after Elvis or not. However, this letter is from the airport authorities is ridicule. I live in Europe and have been to Memphis twice because of Elvis. I have no clue who Danny Thomos, Fred Smith and Ned Cook are. Martin Luther King would be great candidate if he had ever lived in Memphis.... What is this for b*llsh*t?
Ruthie wrote on March 04, 2012
I think t his subject has been hashed over as much as possible. My input is directed to Supercapitalista & it is not a criticism. Just making a point to say that the first time I went to New Orleans (I have been there many times) was because of Louis Armstrong (I have every recording) & the history of dixieland music. To those of us who love jazz, Louis is very important. Many jazz greats came from NO but Louis paved the way so to speak. I admire the Board of Directors who had enough sense & guts to name the airport after him. Memphis/Shelby County could take a lesson. Memphis has such a fantastic culture & is way too interesting to have an airport simply named Memphis International Airport. How boring & uncreative is that! But its Board is obviously boring & uncreative so what can we expect? It is what it is & will unfortunately remain that way.
theoldscudder wrote on March 04, 2012
Perhaps they are waiting to name it after BB King. Just a thought.
EForever wrote on March 05, 2012
Do the names Martin Luther King Jr., Danny Thomas, Fred Smith, or E. W. “Ned” Cook bring approximately 600,000 people to Memphis every year? How much do the visitors to Memphis spend because of the names of Martin Luther King Jr., Danny Thomas, Fred Smith, and E. W. “Ned” Cook? Maybe the Memphis Airport Authority Board should consider those questions and then tell us who has the most "major impact" on Memphis. I'm one of the 600,000 who go to Memphis at least once a year, because of Elvis...only because of Elvis.
Jerome wrote on March 05, 2012
Please name it the Bouke-airport..