On this episode of the world famous Sofa King Podcast, we go down under and talk about one of Australia’s national heroes, Steve Irwin. This topic is a fan-favorite based on the polls, so we dive deep into the life of the Crocodile Hunter himself. Steve Irwin was born into the career he excelled at. His parents were a wildlife expert and a wildlife rehabilitator who owned a small place called the Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park. Young Steve grew up around crocs and snakes and all the horrible, horrible things in Australia that will kill you quick-like. He was given a pet snake as a boy, which made him love reptiles even more.
Irwin spent his youth feeding, training, and cleaning up after the animals, and he was so good at it that by the age 13, he was able to volunteer at the Queensland's East Coast Crocodile Management. While there, he allegedly captured over 100 crocs himself, and he brought several of them back to his parents’ park.
This upbringing made him an animal lover who was always one step ahead of the reptiles. As an adult, he was still working the in park, and he met Terri Raines, who owned an animal rehab joint back in Oregon. They fell in love instantly and married; this marriage is what rocketed Steve Irwin to fame. How, do you ask? Well, instead of a honeymoon, they went out capturing crocks and filming it, and the resulting work was the genesis of what became the massive hit, the Crocodile Hunter. In no time, this single documentary led to a TV series, and within a few years, it was an international smash.
Irwin spent a large portion of his wealth buying up land to act as nature preserves, and he used his fame to help educate the world about amazing, deadly, and often endangered animals. He transformed the park owned by his parents to the now massive Australia Zoo. His wild eyes and crazy dialect, along with his crack-head like enthusiasm made him a house hold name. Everyone watched as he wrestled massive deadly crocs, taunted poisonous snakes, and crawled around horrible animals that would have killed anyone else.
However, this flirt with death that made him so popular eventually caught up with him. While filing for a new documentary, he and his camera man ran into a large stingray. They filmed it to get footage that Irwin could give to his daughter Bindi for her new show, but he got too close. It stung him several times in the torso, eventually piercing his heart. They took him back to the boat and rushed him to a hospital, but it was too late. Steve Irwin was made famous by and died for what he loved, and he filmed it all the way. So, give this a listen, and then you have my permission to go binge watch YouTube clips of him doing crazy, crazy things.
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