On the day Steve Irwin passed away, his friend and photographer, Justin Lyon, was with him. Justin accidentally recorded Steve’s last words on film. They had worked together on many films, with Justin being part of the crew.
Steve Irwin faced a tragic accident while shooting “Ocean’s Deadliest” on the Great Barrier Reef in 2006, where a stingray caused his death. Justin Lyon was right there with Steve, recording their work.
Justin explained that they noticed a big stingray coming their way, so they decided to capture it on film. They were shooting for a while when Steve suggested taking “one last shot.” That’s when things took a terrible turn. Justin, who had the camera, thought it was going to be a great shot. Suddenly, the stingray leaned forward and struck Steve with its tail.
“There were hundreds of hits in a very short time.”
When the sharp blades hit Steve quickly in the chest, he struggled to breathe.
Justin shared that they pulled Steve back into the boat, and that’s when they realized how serious it was.
As Steve was having a tough time, Justin encouraged him to think about his family.
“He just kind of calmly looked up at me and said, ‘I’m dying,’” Justin recalled. That was the last thing Steve said.
We hoped for a miracle. I did CPR on him for more than an hour until the ambulance arrived, but as soon as they saw him, they declared him dead.
Steve passed away at 44, leaving behind his loving wife Terri and their two children, Bindi, 8, and Robert, 3.
Bindi and Robert, who are all grown up now, are doing their animal-loving dad proud by working at the Australia Zoo, a zoo run by their family.
Recently, Robert shared a touching moment with his friends. He told people on social media that his late father had discovered a new species that would soon be part of the Australia Zoo.
In a video, the 19-year-old got emotional as he released a snake into the water, saying, “This is one of the best moments of my whole life…” This is a big deal for Australia Zoo because it’s the first time they have a hatchling of the Irwin’s Turtle (Elseya irwini), a species named after the Irwin family, in any zoo worldwide.
Before letting the little turtle go into its new home, the young environmentalist showed a picture of his late father. He said, “All of Dad’s stories about how amazing and beautiful they are make it seem so real,” and added, “Dad would be thrilled with that.”