John Robert McBurney was born July 5, 1933, in Hemet, CA, to James Robert and Lena Eiland, and died April 12, 2024, in Santa Maria. 

They moved to Santa Margarita in 1945 and owned McBurney Motor Court/Diner. John was a USAF postal clerk/driver when he married Rebecca (Beckie) Epperly at the Arroyo Grande Courthouse on May 16, 1953. They had met at an outdoor movie at Santa Margarita School. He enlisted as a senior, entering basic training before graduating from Atascadero High School. They had two sons, William (June 1954) and Robert (March 1957). 

John worked at ASH, Hitchin’ Post liquor, and Cal Poly SLO until being injured. He sold Kirby vacuums, then bought Green Acres Rest Home in 1968. They sold out to travel in 1977, returning to Atascadero months later and starting his abalone jewelry business. They sold souvenirs at The Chuckwagon Restaurant in Cambria and holiday jewelry at Sears Stores. They built a home at Santa Margarita Lake in 1981, moved near Atascadero Lake in 1987, and to Santa Maria in 2017.

John sold handbags, accessories, and jewelry throughout SLO County. He enjoyed gardening, barbecuing, fishing, hunting, dancing, RVing and cruises. He seldom missed a grandchild’s sport, band/choir concert, ballet recital, play, birthday, or field trip and attended one birth! John was well-known, well-loved and well-missed. 

Predeceased by his parents, brothers, great-grandson and sister-in-law. Honoring his memory with Beckie are William (Christine), Robert (Carolyn), Grandchildren Amber (Erik) Johnson, Travis (Alli) McBurney, Katy (Chuck) Smith, Aaron McBurney, Randy (Chelsey) McBurney, Great Grandkids Andrew, Madelyn & Abby Joy (Johnson), Patrick, Kimberly, Ryan & Adeline (Smith), Brandon, Dylan & Megan (McBurney). 

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2024, from 2-4:30 at Colony Park on Traffic Way in Atascadero. No formal service; please come greet the family, share some memories of Dad, and enjoy refreshments. More Information: