Vale Mike Burston

Beef Central, 04/10/2016

RESPECTED Victorian cattleman and industry leader Mike Burston passed away last week.

Mr Burston, who received an Order of Australia Medal this year in the Queen’s Birthday honours for his services to industry, was a well-known identity in Victorian and national beef circles.

Mike Burston

Mike Burston

He, along with Ron NcNeil from South Australia and the Bott family from Naranghi Angus were instrumental in the development of carcase competitions in southern Australia.

Mr Burston was a member of the Cattle Council of Australia from 1990 until 1997, and a long-serving member of the Victorian Graziers Association and its successor, the Victorian Farmers Federation.

He was also closely involved in the establishment of the regional Vet Laboratory in Benalla in the 1970s.

Mr Burston was regarded as an ‘innovative perfectionist’ as a farmer, with a deep interest in both Merino sheep and composite cattle breeding.

“Above all else, he was a person with great integrity,” said long-time friend and fellow cattle breeder, Don Lawson.

“Mike was a long time contributor to the advancement of Victorian agriculture, in particular the beef cattle industry,” the RASV said in a statement.

“He was a member of the Board of the Society for 31 years from 1973 to 2003, and a valued Life Councillor. Mike served as chair of several RASV committees including Beef Cattle, and was the driving force behind the Society’s Beef Carcase Competition,” the RASV said.

“The RASV is indebted to Michael Burston for his invaluable advice, voluntary work and guidance in the development of our agricultural programs. Our sincere condolences to Mike’s wife Lois, family and friends.”

  • A memorial service to celebrate the life of John Michael (Mike) Burston will be held at the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Arundel Street, Benalla tomorrow – Wednesday October 5 – from 12 Noon. A private family cremation will follow.






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  1. Sarah Plowman, 10/10/2016

    Thinking of the Burston family of this time if loss … I remember a lovely dance with him on my wedding night … thank you Mike for swinging me around the dance floor and for being such loyal and sincere friend to my father Tony Plowman n my mother Jennie Plowman.
    Sarah Plowman

  2. David Everist, 07/10/2016

    A truly wonderful caring man.
    He will be so missed by his family, friends and those he came across in all walks of life.
    I have a vivid memory of Mike addressing a hostile crowd of Royal Melbourne show exhibitors. He calmly gave assurances which were faithfully taken on-board – such was the trust they had in Mike.
    He was that kind of man with a wonderful smile and sense of humour.

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