Metallica members and Dave Mustaine pay respect to Ray Burton, father of Cliff Burton

The elder Burton passed away from pneumonia at age 94

Metallica honor Ray Burton
Ray Burton with James Hetfield, via YouTube

As reported over the weekend, Ray Burton, father of late Metallica bassist Cliff Burton, passed away at the age of 94 last week. In his honor, all four current members of Metallica, as well as former Metallica guitarist Dave Mustaine, have each paid tribute to the elder Burton.

In a post on, each member of Metallica offered their own tribute to Ray following a general statement in which the band wrote, “For 38 years, we were lucky enough to have the energy, wisdom and light of Ray in our lives. His eternal youth with his drive, positivity and relentless smile were both incredibly powerful and stirringly honest.”

Frontman James Hetfield eulogized Ray with a poem, which read as follows:

Mr. Ray Burton is a hero of mine
In earthly form, his end of the line
He weathered many a difficult storm
A strong compass
true and gracefully worn
To his last breath, I’ve not met a more positive man
And to his son there was not a more loyal fan
So he leaves the material world to be with his sons and wife
I feel so very blessed to have had him grace my life
In earthly form, his end of the line
Mr. Ray Burton is a hero of mine

Drummer Lars Ulrich wrote, “Thank you for lighting up every room you walked into … and of course, thank you for giving the world the gift of Cliff and his unique talents. I’m honored and humbled to have played and stood beside him.”

Bassist Robert Trujillo added, “Always smiling, and always telling it like it is; someone to learn from. Ray’s love for all styles of music was passion driven … Ray was a warrior, and would want us to face life the way he has, with that desire to be the best you can be from the inside out, stay humble, and keep smiling!”

And guitarist Kirk Hammett simply wrote, “Lots of love Ray. May you finally be with Cliff and [Cliff’s mother] Jan.”

(Read: 33 Years After His Death, the Legend of Metallica’s Cliff Burton Lives On)

Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine, who was a member of Metallica alongside Cliff Burton in the early ’80s, also paid respect to Ray, writing on Twitter, “So sad to hear about the passing of Ray Burton. He was there the first time I played ‘In My Darkest Hour’ in honor of Cliff. Rest in Peace Ray, you will be missed.”

Faith No More drummer Mike Bordin, who played with Cliff in the band EZ-Street, also paid tribute to Ray, writing on Twitter, “R.I.P. to The Great Ray Burton. Hard to put into words My gratitude to Him for all of His kindness and His incredible character. What a huge gift to have had that in My life for 45 years. Truly one of a kind.”

Ray’s stepdaughter Casey revealed in a video tribute that Ray passed away from pneumonia.