Danny Keough: What You Didn't Know About Lisa Marie Presley's Ex-Husband

Benjamin Storm Keough, grandson of Elvis Presley and beloved son of Lisa Marie Presley, was reported dead on July 12, 2020, by TMZ. He was 27 and reportedly died by suicide, at home in Calabasas, CA. Benjamin was the son of Presley and her first husband, Danny Keough, whom she was married to from 1988 to 1994, prior to hooking up with Michael Jackson. The couple also share daughter Riley, an actress seen in the likes of "American Honey" and "Mad Max: Fury Road."

USA Today noted Presley is, "Completely heartbroken, inconsolable and beyond devastated," by the loss. Danny Keough is a musician from Chicago, who met Benjamin's mother while playing for her band. As Cheat Sheet advises, the couple got married in 1988, when he was 23 years old and Presley just 20. Although Keough has yet to comment publicly on the death of his son, the news has no doubt shaken their family to its very core.

Danny Keough and Lisa Marie Presley shared Scientology

Keough and Presley tied the knot at the Celebrity Center of the Church of Scientology in West Hollywood with just nine people in attendance, including Priscilla Presley, who shared her joy at the event via an official statement. "I am thrilled for Lisa Marie. Danny is a great guy, and I couldn't be happier for the two of them." People reported on their nuptials in depth, describing it as the "quietest royal wedding of the century."

The publication confirmed Keough as a Chicago-born transplant to California, who followed his mother and stepfather into Scientology. Keough's mother and stepfather even founded a private Scientology academy following the family's move across coasts. An insider confirmed the musician's "normal" upbringing and good character, insisting he wasn't after Presley's money because the church takes care of all his needs. An insider told People, "he's not the type of person to take his marriage vows as anything less than solemn. He is rock solid. When I learned of the marriage, my first reaction was: 'You're kidding. Little Danny with little Lisa. How perfect.'"

Danny Keough enjoys a low-key lifestyle

As People notes, Keough actually met Presley in 1984 at church's Celebrity Center, where she had an apartment at the time. He was working as a jobbing bass player. Those close to the couple considered them totally perfect for each other. Their marriage didn't last long, however, with the two calling it quits after six years in 1994. According to Pop Culture, Presley traveled to the Dominican Republic to get it fast-tracked. She married Michael Jackson just 20 days later.

But she and Keough remain remarkably close with Presley telling Rolling Stone in 2003 that, "He's my absolute best friend in the world," noting she was happy to be connected to Keough for the rest of her life. The interview in question was even conducted with Keough in the next room, home-schooling a young Benjamin and Riley. Indeed, Riley once said of her father: "I grew up very privileged with my mother. But my dad didn't live like that. And I think experiencing both sides has been helpful. My father had mattresses on the floor of his apartments. He lived in cabins and trailer parks" (via The Guardian). And what did she think of her father's lifestyle? "My memories of growing up with him were so colorful and eccentric and fun. It was a good vibe, you know?" 

Danny Keough provided a support system to his former wife

Former couple Presley and Keough proved just how close they are when the musician moved in with his former wife to assist in the grieving process following the devastating loss of their son. According to The Sun, in March 2021, Elvis's daughter was "being comforted by her first husband" in a brand-new home alongside twin daughters Harper and Finley. An insider advised, "Danny has moved around a lot in the past but came back to be by Lisa's side immediately when they were left devastated by Ben's death, he was staying with her at the Beverly Hills Hotel." 

Describing it as "an extraordinarily difficult time" for the mother of four, the insider noted Keough has been "a rock" for his wife of six years. There was nothing romantic going on between the duo, rather they'd holed up in Calabasas to focus on keeping their family intact in the wake of an unspeakable tragedy. The former couple was said to be "very close." Presley was reportedly finding it difficult to cope and was struggling to see sense in what happened to her son. Although they rarely left the house, particularly with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Hollywood Life snapped Presley and Keough out and about in L.A. looking casual and masked-up, naturally. The musician was a very visible support to his former partner.

Danny Keough's net worth is hard to gauge

As his daughter Riley attested, Keough isn't a man with a taste for the finer things in life (even if she did offend him by describing her father as "poor," via The Guardian). It's tough to ascertain what the traveling musician is banking, but Celebrity Net Worth suggests Keough is worth around $1 million to date, based on his music work, as well as a lucrative position with the production studio for fellow Scientologist Chick Corea, which Keough nabbed upon initially landing in California. He's been open about his financial struggles over the years, admitting on Instagram in 2015 that he was rolling into Nevada with just thirty bucks in his pocket. 

Keough was hoping to turn it into a few thousand dollars, to "Pay all the poor suckers unlucky enough to be my friends the last few years." Although Keough considered trying his luck, the musician ultimately opted against it after realizing he needed money to live and didn't want to risk losing everything. Keough revealed, "I did the unthinkably boring, the painfully correct thing. I got gas. ... And still with enough [in] my wallet for two packaged turkey sandwiches at yet another 7/11 and even a glazed donut. After the initial shame at my lack of courage. I felt good. Like a normal person. I fit in the decent file. It was all roses from here. Now I'm driving home to eat this $40,000 donut."