Lew Burston

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?, Burston, Pedro Montanez
Burston & Pete Sanstol: Circa 1928

Lew Burston was born in New York, circa 1896. He had been a theatrical agent before getting into boxing management after World War I. He often traveled abroad, mostly in Europe, hunting for boxing talent. He apparently had good instincts, for his stable of boxers eventually included:


He would become remembered for a comment he made in 1951 after Turpin took the middleweight crown from Sugar Ray Robinson: "Sugar Ray had Paris in his legs," referring to a high-living tour of France Robinson had taken.

While Joe Louis was world champion, Burston was the European representative of Mike Jacobs's Twentieth Century Sporting Club. He also held the same positions with the International Boxing Club and Madison Square Garden. In the 1950s he was president of the New York Boxing Managers Guild.

Burston wrote an article for the December 1949 issue of Sport Magazine, entitled "A Heavyweight Named Roland" (about Roland LaStarza), which was reprinted in the 2003 book The Italian Stallions: Heroes of Boxing's Glory Days.

His sister, Mathilda (Mattie) Ross, wife of Arthur Leonard Ross, died in New York November 2, 1966. On January 15, 1968, he and three others were named in a federal grand jury indictment on charges of paying $150 in bribes to Internal Revenue Service employees for departing aliens. The accusations so troubled him that he suffered a heart attack soon after. He died at age 74 on March 19, 1969, at Le Roy Hospital. Survivors included a daughter, Ms. Hazel Jerome of Manhattan, and two grandchildren. Funeral services were held at the Riverside, Amsterdam Avenue and 76th Street.


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