During a random Internet check last night, my lover found a breaking news bit about Steve Irwin being killed in a diving accident. Since it was very fresh news and only CNN seemed to have anything to report, I thought perhaps they were wrong. I hoped they were wrong.

We both waited and kept checking. By the time we went to sleep, it was obvious that the news was real. Stevo had died.

This morning I spent some time chasing links and reading articles. Animal Planet is starting a fund in his honor and I will donate.

It’s not like I ever met him or planned on meeting him. I don’t even have cable TV right now and haven’t gotten to see his show in a couple years. I discovered him by accident one night, flipping channels while getting ready to go to the strip club. (I liked watching/hearing various shows while getting ready, usually “The Simpsons,” “Monty Python,” and “The Crocodile Hunter.”) This cute Australian, spouting bizarre phrases, with an unquenchable enthusiasm for all animals and an especially soft spot for non-cuddly animals; grabbed my attention and never let go. It was impossible not to fall in love with him. Every night that his show was on, I watched. I had a smile on my face when I left home and sometimes ran late because I had to see what was going to happen.

I miss the guy. I feel deep sympathy for his wife and children. Steve is an irreplaceable man. I doubt there is anyone else on earth remotely capable of filling his shoes in any way. He touched me, like a whole lot of people, because he was always a real person, not a celebrity.

I’m not trying to saint him. But one of my personal philosophies has always been that someone who loves animals can’t be all bad. And his love for the creatures on earth knew no bounds. His passion for reptiles has saved many of them and created a worldwide awareness of the uniqueness of these amazing critters. And he helped to de-terrify them. Although he always respected the animal’s right to be and its powers, it was always amusing to watch a deadly snake desperately trying to get away from “raw Stevo.”

In an interview that I found online, Steve describes himself and his reason for being.

Ben: “Do you feel any competition with Crocodile Dundee, the fictional character, versus the real person?”

Steve: “Oh mate, firstly I think ‘Crocodile Dundee’ was an exceptional set of films. Really, really good. The best thing about ‘Crocodile Dundee’ was the whole world got to glimpse Australia, and I guess that’s what Crocodile Hunter’s all about too. I reckon Crocodile Hunter’s like a combination of Tarzan and James Bond, where when I’m dead and buried they’ll be working out who the actor’s going to be to play Steve Irwin, because I’m a real life character. I’ve rescued crocs since the day I could walk. I catch snakes getting them off the road. My mom was a pioneer in wildlife rehabilitation. I am flesh and blood. I’m not an actor. I live as a wildlife warrior. I put my life on the line. I will die for conservation. That’s my destiny and that’s why God put me on this planet — to conserve and educate people about wildlife.”

I feel that he was a truly good and decent person; a light in this world. He was all about life and joy. I will miss him.

2 thoughts on “steve irwin

  1. Weirdly enough, snakes have always been my favorite animals and I just really appreciate anyone who takes the time and energy to move them from basking in the sunwarmed roads to prevent them from being harmed.

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