When Steve Irwin died in 2006, the world was shocked. The TV personality and conservationist seemed invincible as he faced off against wild animals on his show The Crocodile Hunter. But no one was as closely affected by his loss as his family. Now, his youngest child, Robert Irwin, has grown up and is ready to make his mark on the world. As the people who loved his father watch him pursue his dreams, many wonder how much he’s like his famous father.
The shocking loss of Steve Irwin
Steve Irwin was famous for his love of animals. Whether cuddling a koala or narrowly escaping a crocodile’s jaws, he loved to educate people about different animals and why they behave the way they do.
So it was shocking when, after a life filled with daring exploits with all kinds of dangerous animals, a relatively gentle stingray ended his life. Irwin was filming the stingray when its tail pierced his heart.
The star had dedicated his life to wildlife conservation through his TV show and advocacy work. His life was filled with animals from an early age because his parents established the Australia Zoo in 1970.
Irwin’s family has carried on his work since his death. They continue to run the zoo, and it means so much to them that his daughter Bindi even got married there in 2020. She was eight years old when he died, and her brother Robert Irwin was only two years old. But now, he’s an adult, making his own way in the world.
Steve Irwin’s son Robert Irwin has a different passion
Although many people have remarked how much Robert Irwin looks like his late father, there are differences between them as well. Daily Mail Australia reports that he’s now ready to leave home and forge his own path in the world.
Irwin’s passion is nature photography. And he’s already won awards for his work, despite his young age. Now he appears to be heading for South Africa, a part of the world he fell in love with when the family visited in 2018.
Following his dreams means he’ll be leaving the zoo behind, as well as his family, who are reportedly heartbroken to say goodbye to him for now. But although he’s striking out alone, he isn’t leaving them behind altogether. His great love is photography, and he plans to use his skills in a way his father would have loved.
But there are similarities too
Through the years, Robert Irwin has made many appearances on TV, both on talk shows and the family reality series Crikey! It’s the Irwins. According to Insider, Irwin has spoken about his desire to use his talents on behalf of his father’s legacy.
“I hope in every aspect of my life that I can make him proud, and [make] sure that his message never dies,” he explained.
In fact, his goal in traveling the world is to make documentaries about nature, furthering his father’s passion for animals and the environment.
A few years ago, Irwin showed how much he’s like his father in a pair of pictures. They showed him feeding a crocodile the same way his father had many years before.
“Dad and me feeding Murray… same place, same croc – two photos 15 years apart,” he wrote.
Irwin’s primary focus may be photography, but like his father, he’s using his gifts to champion the animals that need him.