The singer was offered various jobs in different branches of the military, including the Air Force and the Navy, which would have seen him performing for troops and avoiding much of the training of other soldiers.
The Navy even suggested an Elvis Presley Company, which would include a battalion made up of Elvis’ friends, and private lodgings where he could sleep while performing in Las Vegas.
However, Colonel Tom convinced him these were not the avenues for his act, partly because they would include performing for free, which was not part of the Colonel’s way.
Another reason, according to Peter Brown’s Down at the End of Lonely Street: Life and Death of Elvis Presley, Colonel Tom worried about how Elvis’ reputation would be affected if he took an ‘easy’ route in the Army, rather than serving like everyone else.
According to the Washington Post, this idea ultimately sat well with Elvis, who was reported as saying: “People were expecting me to mess up, to goof up in one way or another.