There are few people who've had as much of an impact on wildlife conservation as Steve Irwin. The reality TV star dedicated his life to protecting nature long before many Americans had heard the word "crikey."
Irwin passed away in 2006, when he was fatally stabbed by a stingray fish while filming an underwater documentary. He was only 44, and he left behind his wife Terri and two kids.
To honor Irwin's 57th birthday, Google has changed its Doodle to a series of illustrations highlighting his life.
Steve has been honoured with a #GoogleDoodle! Happy Birthday for tomorrow, to the greatest Wildlife Warrior. We’re… https://t.co/thUbXWi93a— Australia Zoo (@Australia Zoo)1550747215.0
I’m honored to have gotten to make the art for the Steve Irwin doodle today. It was a labor of love for a man who t… https://t.co/Rik2LajkqX— Shanti Rittgers (@Shanti Rittgers)1550786285.0
The main DoodleDoodle features Irwin holding a crocodile. While, that alone would be a great tribute to "The Crocodile Hunter," if you click it, it expands and near wordlessly tells you about his life.
From the way his park grew in size, to meeting his wife and becoming a TV star, to having his kids, Bindi and Robert. The literal slide show ends with his family in front of the Australia Zoo, which they now run in Irwin's memory.
It's rather touching.
The #GoogleDoodle for Steve Irwin's birthday is a gorgeous wee tribute to a real legend, I loved scrolling through it :^)— Dolf (@Dolf)1550803160.0
#Google’s home page 🤗 #SteveIrwin 🐊 https://t.co/d7PIfdPUdU— Raʾs Al-Ġhūl (@Raʾs Al-Ġhūl)1550802064.0
PLEASE THE GOOGLE ART BEING MULTIPLE STEVE IRWIN ARTWORKS IS MAKING ME CRY LOOK AT THIS https://t.co/QKUusrOrma— HEY MAN I'M DA FANTASTIC FUNGUS (@HEY MAN I'M DA FANTASTIC FUNGUS)1550764758.0
That was a brilliant Steve Irwin tribute, @Google. Well done! https://t.co/sxIu9Rka2w— Jordan De Leon (@Jordan De Leon)1550802893.0
Irwin had been working with dangerous animals since the age of nine. Despite his "Crocodile Hunter" title, his work was devoted to protecting them, capturing and relocating the animals for their own safety.
His family has a park in Queensland, originally a tiny roadside park called Beerwah Reptile Park, but now called the Australia Zoo. It was there he met his wife, Terri.
While on their honeymoon, the Irwins shot footage capturing crocodiles. This would become the first episode of The Crocodile Hunter. The show exploded in popularity, and the fame and money allowed the Irwins to put a lot more into their conservation efforts.
After his passing, his family has carried on his legacy. Terri and her kids, Bindi and Robert, are very involved in conservation efforts, and gave their blessing and assistance with the Google Doodle.
Looking through the images is enough to make you cry.
@BuzzFeed wow i rly just cried— avocado quéèn (@avocado quéèn)1550798436.0
who else cried over the google doodle for Steve Irwin’s birthday?— eleanor (@eleanor)1550796804.0
The last slide made a tear drop Dang. We won't forget you mate #steveirwin #happybirthdaysteve https://t.co/RSkuvKsluE— Deveraue (@Deveraue)1550803074.0
And I’ve only had one glass of wine am I alright— Gracey O'Connell ⚡️ (@Gracey O'Connell ⚡️)1550797085.0
Terri wrote a post about today's Doodle, expanding on their story.
"Today's Google Doodle acknowledges the life and achievements of my husband Steve Irwin, whose efforts to protect wildlife and wild places have been recognised as the most extensive of any conservationist.
"We are so proud that his legacy lives on, as that was his greatest wish. He once said, 'I don't care if I'm remembered, as long as my message is remembered.'"
She also spoke on the expanded efforts of the Australia Zoo and her family's conservation efforts.
"Today, Australia Zoo is still growing with more than 1,200 animals, and nearly 1,000 acres. We protect nearly half a million acres of habitat, and our non-profit organisation supports conservation projects around the world.
"We even have a Wildlife Hospital that has treated over 82,000 sick, injured, and orphaned wildlife, solely to return them back to the wild."
Let's wish a happy birthday in remembrance of a man who loved nature so very much.
I love how Google has Steve Irwin featured today. Happy 57th birthday, legend! https://t.co/6QetYFBU2G— scarlət (@scarlət)1550802977.0
Today 12th is Steve irwins birthday and we didn't forget you it's been almost 13 years since you've passed away ..… https://t.co/hZoM0SgaLI— cnk23 (@cnk23)1550802351.0
@newscomauHQ Steve Irwin was larger than life. Happy Birthday my men and have a blast party in the heaven. Sorry be… https://t.co/TSImiV9Eoh— Sail (@Sail)1550793474.0
Who is the best crocodile hunter-man? 🐊 For me it always be Steve Irwin. 💐 ***Happy 57th Birthday to YOU, Mr, Stev… https://t.co/qZgdLXMmkT— Stupid Heart Idiot Brain (@Stupid Heart Idiot Brain)1550779467.0
His family runs the Wildlife Warriors charity, whose efforts are dedicated to wildlife conservation and animal care. If you'd like to help, you can find out more and give donations at this link.