Remembering Steve Irwin: How His Family is Coping
September 6, 2006

While the world mourns the loss of Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin, his family struggles to cope with life without their hero.

"Steve and I weren't like father and son," said Bob Irwin, Steve's father. "We never were. We were good mates."

Steve's grief-stricken father announced Wednesday that the family had declined Australia's offer to hold a state funeral, explaining that his son died doing what he loved.

John Stainton, Irwin's longtime friend and manager, told Larry King on CNN Tuesday night that the harsh reality is starting to sink in for Steve's wife, Terri, and their two children. Stainton revealed that Terri is doing, "a lot worse than me."

"The family saw the casket last night," Stainton told King. "Until you actually see that, you can't imagine, and you think it's a dream."

Steve was also a longtime friend of "Extra," and we were with him soon after he first became a father, when he was determined to instill his love for wildlife into his children.

"One of the most important things to do is to train Bindi to understand dangerous animals from not so dangerous," he told us at the time.

Irwin's philosophy worked. At the time of his death, 8-year-old Bindi was already in production on her own wildlife series for Discovery Kids.

The courageous croc hunter once confessed to Larry King that he did have one fear about his dangerous job: "The only thing that I am a little concerned about is that Bindi won't have a daddy and that kind of worries me a little."

Steve Irwin is no longer with us, but his spirit will live on forever.


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