Axl Rose hopes Lisa Marie Presley will be 'happy' with Elvis and son Benjamin

Axl Rose hopes Lisa Marie Presley will be ‘happy’ with Elvis and son Benjamin

Guns N’ Roses rocker Axl Rose remembers his close friend Lisa Marie Presley after her sudden death at age 54.

The “Sweet Child O’ Mine” singer, 60, tells PEOPLE in an exclusive statement that losing Presley still feels surreal.

“I will miss my friend Lisa. Her passing, like her son’s, or his father’s passing as a child, doesn’t seem real,” he says. “Lisa loved her family, all of her children. My heart goes out to them.”

Presley was the mother of daughter Riley Keough, 33, twins Harper and Finley, 14, and son Benjamin Keough, who committed suicide in July 2020 at age 27.

Rose says that she knew that her friend struggled with the loss of her son and that she did her best to remind him that he was a pillar of support if she needed it.

“The death of her son was shocking, tragic, and devastating. It was something that, at one point, you obviously didn’t want to bring up, but would awkwardly bring up in an effort to let her know you cared and were thinking of her, them, and being any comfort one could, which she appreciated,” she says.

RELATED VIDEO: Lisa Marie Presley Dead at 54

The rocker remembers exchanging “jokes, news articles and lots of animal videos” with Presley after Benjamin’s death in an effort to put a smile on his face, saying he tried to “let her know about the constant thought about her, them, and wishing the best for her.

“I wanted her to be happy, to feel good about things, at least as much as one could under the circumstances. And really, with the closeness of their relationship, one might hope, but truthfully, it didn’t seem, at least without a real time passes, a reasonable reality,” he says.

She continues: “Who knows what comes next in life, but I’d like to think that they’re together, her and Ben with her father and Ben’s grandfather in some way, and Lisa, and the most important men in her life are happy together. ”

Rose says that during her years of friendship with Presley, the pair talked about everything from the music industry and current events to life in general.

“I was lucky enough to hear firsthand about her father and her experiences and memories with him. She would come to shows and we would hang out backstage,” says Rose. “It was always great to see her and she was always fun and very supportive.”

lisa marie presley

He also recalls recent debates on Baz Luhrmann’s theory. Elvis biopic, starring Austin Butler as The King.

“In recent months we talked a lot about the Elvis film that she was very proud of, and especially that it touched on her father’s early childhood love of black gospel and later, blues,” she says. “At first she was very nervous about how the public would react to the movie because it was very important to her to do right by her father.”

Presley, the rock legend’s only daughter, was a fan of the film and told a pre-Golden Globes party just days before her death that her father would have been “proud” of the film.

“I’m so overwhelmed by this movie and the effect it’s had and what Baz has done, what Austin has done,” she said. “I’m very proud. And I know my father would be very proud, too. So, I want to thank you all for being here and I’m so overwhelmed with gratitude, so thank you.”

Presley died Thursday after being rushed to the hospital. His mother, Priscilla Presley, confirmed his death in a statement to PEOPLE, saying: “It is with a heavy heart that I must share the devastating news that my beautiful daughter Lisa Marie has left us.”

“She was the most passionate, strong, loving woman I’ve ever met,” Priscilla said. “We ask for privacy as we try to deal with this profound loss. Thank you for the love and prayers. There will be no further comment at this time.”

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