September 04, 2006



Steve Irwin, naturalist, environmentalist and TV presenter, was born on February 22, 1962. He died on September 4, 2006, aged 44.

STEVE IRWIN, who has died during underwater filming aged 44 after a stingray barb pierced his heart, was known through his documentaries on the cable TV channel Animal Planet to some 500 million people in more than 120 countries. As the exuberant, golden-haired, khaki-wearing and apparently fearless Crocodile Hunter, he got very close to — and even wrestled — numerous apex predators. His unscripted narration was punctuated with “Crikey!” and “ Look at this beauty!” Many called him a thrill seeker, but he called himself a wildlife warrior. He was in fact a highly knowledgeable natural historian, whose mission was to educate people by enthusing them. “If you can’t get wilds into people’s hearts”, he said, “then we haven’t got a hope in heck of saving them — because people don’t want to save something they don’t know.”


Irwin owned land in Australia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the US. He was a fan of Essendon in the Australian Football League, and loved mixed martial arts competitions. He supported the conservative Liberal Party, and once described the Prime Minister, John Howard, as the “greatest leader in the entire world”. Howard returned the favour on hearing of Irwin’s death, calling him “the genuine article . . . he took risks, he enjoyed life, but he brought immense joy to millions of people, particularly to children”. Among Irwin’s legacies is Elseya irwini, a new type of snapping turtle he discovered on the coast of Queensland. He was named Tourism Export of the Year in 2004.

Condolences can be left on Animal Planet's website

Posted by: Skye at 04:14 PM | Comments (4) | Add Comment
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1 He will certainly be well-remembered. An amazing man, he seemed to live on the edge of danger, but knew exactly what he was doing. I'm curious as to the specifics, though. Was it a "freak accident", or was he again, tempting fate?

Posted by: wordsmith at September 04, 2006 06:59 PM (nrGCx)

2 Also nice to know that he supported John Howard!

Posted by: wordsmith at September 04, 2006 07:03 PM (nrGCx)

3 You know I wasn't passing by THAT bit of info on Steve. Irwin's death was a tragic accident - of all the places that stingray could have struck...Steve died doing what he loved best in the world, outside of his family. You know I used to swim with Atlantic Stingrays - and on occasion - petted them. Did the same with the Sandtigers and Brown sharks. It seems like a lifetime ago...

Posted by: Skye at September 04, 2006 07:11 PM (Np5ji)

4 Steve Irwin was, as the Aussies say, true-blue. This accident is so very tradgic. Especially since he could have survived had he not done a very human thing - he pulled out the spike. It ripped a larger hole and allowed excessive bleeding from the heart. Leaving the spike in place was sealing the puncture. One last horrible lesson from Steve to us all: leave the punturing object in place for medicos to remove. Never remove the object yourself.

Posted by: Indigo Red at September 05, 2006 11:39 PM (6HsUG)

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