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What a way to go out. He's leaving behind those 2 beautiful kids and a wife Terry.

Prayers sent to his family.




Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin killed 42 minutes ago



CAIRNS, Australia - Steve Irwin, the hugely popular Australian television personality and conservationist known as the "Crocodile Hunter," was killed Monday by a stingray while filming off the Great Barrier Reef. He was 44.

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Irwin was at Batt Reef, off the remote coast of northeastern Queensland state, shooting a segment for a series called "Ocean's Deadliest" when he swam too close to one of the animals, which have a poisonous bard on their tails, his friend and colleague John Stainton said.

"He came on top of the stingray and the stingray's barb went up and into his chest and put a hole into his heart," said Stainton, who was on board Irwin's boat at the time.

Crew members aboard the boat, Croc One, called emergency services in the nearest city, Cairns, and administered CPR as they rushed the boat to nearby Low Isle to meet a rescue helicopter. Medical staff pronounced Irwin dead when they arrived a short time later, Stainton said.

Irwin was famous for his enthusiasm for wildlife and his catchword "Crikey!" in his television program "Crocodile Hunter." First broadcast in Australia in 1992, the program was picked up by the Discovery network, catapulting Irwin to international celebrity.

He rode his image into a feature film, 2002's "The Crocodile Hunters: Collision Course" and developed the wildlife park that his parents opened, Australia Zoo, into a major tourist attraction.

"The world has lost a great wildlife icon, a passionate conservationist and one of the proudest dads on the planet," Stainton told reporters in Cairns. "He died doing what he loved best and left this world in a happy and peaceful state of mind. He would have said, 'Crocs Rule!'"

Prime Minister John Howard, who hand-picked Irwin to attend a gala barbecue to honor President Bush when he visited in 2003, said he was "shocked and distressed at Steve Irwin's sudden, untimely and freakish death."

"It's a huge loss to Australia," Howard told reporters. "He was a wonderful character. He was a passionate environmentalist. He brought joy and entertainment and excitement to millions of people."

Irwin, who made a trademark of hovering dangerously close to untethered crocodiles and leaping on their backs, spoke in rapid-fire bursts with a thick Australian accent and was almost never seen without his uniform of khaki shorts and shirt and heavy boots.

His ebullience was infectious and Australian officials sought him out for photo opportunities and to promote Australia internationally.

Irwin's public image was dented, however, in 2004 when he caused an uproar by holding his infant son in one arm while feeding large crocodiles inside a zoo pen. Irwin claimed at the time there was no danger to the child, and authorities declined to charge Irwin with violating safety regulations.

Later that year, he was accused of getting too close to penguins, a seal and humpback whales in Antarctica while making a documentary. Irwin denied any wrongdoing, and an Australian Environment Department investigation recommended no action be taken against him.

Stingrays have a serrated, toxin-loaded barb, or spine, on the top of their tail. The barb, which can be up to 10 inches long, flexes if a ray is frightened. Stings usually occur to people when they step on or swim too close to a ray and can be excruciatingly painful but are rarely fatal, said University of Queensland marine neuroscientist Shaun Collin.

Collin said he suspected Irwin died because the barb pierced under his ribcage and directly into his heart.

"It was extraordinarily bad luck. It's not easy to get spined by a stingray and to be killed by one is very rare," Collin said.

News of Irwin's death spread quickly, and tributes flowed from all quarters of society.

At Australia Zoo at Beerwah, south Queensland, floral tributes were dropped at the entrance, where a huge fake crocodile gapes. Drivers honked their horns as they passed.

"Steve, from all God's creatures, thank you. Rest in peace," was written on a card with a bouquet of native flowers.

"We're all very shocked. I don't know what the zoo will do without him. He's done so much for us, the environment and it's a big loss," said Paula Kelly, a local resident and volunteer at the zoo, after dropping off a wreath at the gate.

Stainton said Irwin's American-born wife Terri, from Eugene, Ore., had been informed of his death, and had told their daughter Bindi Sue, 8, and son Bob, who will turn 3 in December.

The couple met when she went on vacation in Australia in 1991 and visited Irwin's Australia Zoo; they were married six months later. Sometimes referred to as the "Crocodile Huntress," she costarred on her husband's television show and in his 2002 movie.

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On the Net:

http://www.crocodilehunter.com
 

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Yea, I was reading it this morning.

What can someone say? He leaves behind a beautiful little girl (8) and a cute little boy (3). What will someone say to them. They won't understand why daddy is not coming home. What a waste of life...to leave these children fatherless and Terry to figure out what to do. I liked watching that show. Man I feel so sorry for the Irwin family. Prayers sent
 

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I was a huge fan. It really saddens me to know that I can never watch him and his antics on tv again. I hope that there will be another person soon to help take his place on the screen but we all know that he is one person who can NEVER be replaced. Many prayers sent to the Irwin family and austrailia zoo.
 

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That is very sad. But I know that someday he would make a mistake. You can't keep tempting death . Prayers for his family.<><
 

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:sad: I really lied his shows. He will be missed. Prayer to his family.
 

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:cry: It really is a shame. But this is something all of us have dealt with or still will. I mean the death of a family member or friend. I lost my dad not to long ago also to a freak accident. What made it some what bearable for me was the fact that he was doing something he really loved. It didn't make it easier. I know that the "Crock-man" loved what he did, all of us do, so for his family there is at leat this bit. It was a dull start to my day. My thoughts are with his family.
 

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This is very sad news.

It was never a question of if, just a question of when something like this was going to happen to Steve. If the truth be told I'm sure he had many close calls/bites that were not aired over the years. I've caught snakes all my life and would never think to take the chances he did.

Its still very sad for his loss he did a lot of good for wildlife so much I over looked his anti-hunting beliefs.

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" The tape has been secured by Queensland state police as evidence for a coroner's inquiry.

Stainton described the footage, which he had seen, as "shocking. It shows that Steve came over the top of the ray and the tail came up, and spiked him here (in the chest), and he pulled it out and the next minute he's gone," "

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Hind sight is always 20/20 but the first thing I learned in first aid was to never pull/yank an imbedded object back out of the human body. This allows even more bleeding and with a serrated barb causes a great deal of additional damage.
 

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Truely a fine man has gone, but his legacy remains.

His motivation and love of life is that to be emulated by all, he really loved his work.
 

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Thumper1 said:
Hind sight is always 20/20 but the first thing I learned in first aid was to never pull/yank an imbedded object back out of the human body. This allows even more bleeding and with a serrated barb causes a great deal of additional damage.
Shock I think.
 

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To me this is just like that nut that got eaten by a grizzly in Alaska.
Irwin was a vehement anti-hunter. Here is one of his quotes

"The time has come for me to expose the current ‘Hitlers of Wildlife’….‘Sustainable use’ of native wildlife is your camouflage, your disguise and your propaganda. Since when has the slaughter of native animals saved a species? Never has and never will!…. Money and greed is the root of all evil… never purchase native wildlife products….[T]here is no excuse of any inhumane cruel or torturous treatment of any animal. Perhaps free-range chickens are a solution worth researching…. We the human race have evolved beyond cannibalism and slavery. I’m confident we will continue to evolve beyond ‘sustainable use’ and wildlife abuse…. If we don’t eliminate ‘sustainable use’ now it will be too late."
 
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