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Elvis photographer Wertheimer dies

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Alfred Wertheimer, pictured in 1996, talks about one of the many photographs he took of Elvis Presley in 1956, as he displays his work at the Circle Gallery in Las Vegas

Alfred Wertheimer, pictured in 1996, talks about one of the many photographs he took of Elvis Presley in 1956, as he displays his work at the Circle Gallery in Las Vegas

Alfred Wertheimer, pictured in 1996, talks about one of the many photographs he took of Elvis Presley in 1956, as he displays his work at the Circle Gallery in Las Vegas

Alfred Wertheimer, the photographer whose photographs of Elvis Presley documented the start of a legendary career, has died.

Wertheimer's editor and gallery curator, Chris Murray, said Wertheimer, who was 85, died of natural causes at his New York apartment.

Wertheimer was 26 and Elvis 21 when he was assigned to photograph the unknown singer. He travelled with Elvis for one week in 1956 and produced a series of now-famous black and white photographs that were the subject of exhibits at the Smithsonian Institution and the Grammy Museum.

Among the most famous shots is The Kiss, a photo of Elvis nuzzling a woman fan backstage.

Priscilla Presley, Elvis's former wife, said today that no photographer was able to get as close-up and personal with Elvis ever again.

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