The world lost one of its most beloved conservationists and TV personalities in 2006, after Steve Irwin, the iconic star of The Crocodile Hunter, was tragically killed by a stingray.
But his legacy has lived on, both through the fans who grew up watching his wildlife series, and his family, who has kept up his important conservation work at the Australia Zoo, working to protect native wildlife.
And 15 years after Steve’s passing, his family took the opportunity to pay tribute to the late icon and his legacy.
Steve’s daughter Bindi has truly followed in the footsteps of her famous dad. She’s become one of the biggest stars of the animal conservation world. From a young age she starred in the wildlife documentary series Bindi the Jungle Girl, and now stars in the reality series Crikey! It’s the Irwins, among other media appearances.
Bindi has also been part of the important work her family has been doing to help local wildlife at their Australia Zoo. The family was credited with saving over 90,000 animals during the massive Australian bushfires last year.
She’s also had some major developments in her personal life: she married her husband Chandler Powell last year, and earlier this year gave birth to her first child, a baby girl named Grace Warrior Irwin Powell.
And in both of these milestones, Bindi paid tribute to her late dad, showing how Steve has remained very much in the hearts of his loved ones all these years later.
At her wedding, she lit a candle in honor of Steve, and also honored him with her baby’s middle names.
“[Grace’s] middle names, Warrior Irwin, are a tribute to my dad and his legacy as the most incredible Wildlife Warrior,” Bindi wrote announcing the birth of her daughter.
And this week, which marked the 15th anniversary of Steve Irwin’s death, Bindi paid tribute to her dad on social media.
“Thank you for always teaching me to stand up for what I believe in. I’m incredibly blessed to be your daughter and I love you so much. ❤️”
In the post, she shared a photo of her now-6-month-old baby, along with a photo of herself as a child with her dad. She expressed sadness that her daughter would never know her grandpa, but knows that his legacy will still live on through her.
“This sweetheart lights up seeing her ‘Grandpa Crocodile’ on screen,” Bindi wrote on Twitter. “I wish that Dad could hug my beautiful girl… I hold on to the thought that he’s her guardian angel now, watching over the most special part of my life, Grace.”
And it’s already clear that Steve’s legacy of caring for wildlife will live on into the next generation: while she’s only a few months old, baby Grace has already met quite a few animals and enjoys going for walks in nature.
Steve’s widow, Terri Irwin, also paid tribute to her late husband on the anniversary of his passing.
“Today is a special day to remember Steve’s mission and message,” she wrote on Twitter. “He was determined to inspire us to be Wildlife Warriors, protecting wildlife & wild places.”
“We can honour his legacy by remembering that every animal is precious…even the ones with big teeth!”
On September 5, which is celebrated as Fathers Day in Australia, Terri also shared another throwback pic of Steve with Bindi and Robert, who were young kids.
The world lost Steve Irwin far too soon. Fifteen years after his passing, it’s clear that his legacy has endured, and his life made a lasting impact on both his fans and his family.
We’re so glad that the Irwin family has continued Steve’s mission to protect Australia’s wildlife.
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