Inside Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin stingray attack death and tragic last words

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Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin was beloved by many for his charming personality as he hosted an array of animal and nature-themed TV shows.

Tragically, the animal lover died on 4 September, 2006 aged just 44 as he was killed while working on one of his programmes.

He died after being stung by a stingray while he was filming a wildlife documentary on the Great Barrier Reef.

Today (Monday, February 22) marks the animal expert's birthday as he would have turned 59 if he were still alive.

Daily Star is exploring the Crocodile Hunter star's tragic last day which saw him pass away.

Steve Irwin's final day leading up to his death saw him preparing to film for his documentary series.

The programme was entitled Ocean's Deadliest on the Great Barrier Reef and saw Steve explore the deep depths of the sea.

His long-term crew member Justin spoke about the day which led to Steve's heartbreaking death.

He said that the crew had been exploring on an inflatable boat when they spotted a massive stingray swimming nearby.

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Steve and Justin decided to carefully slip into the water to try and capture some astounding footage of the creature in its natural habitat.

The pair spent several minutes filming around the stingray and then Justin recalled Irwin asking to film "one last shot" before they finished their day of filming.

Steve was going to swim behind the sea creature so Justin could get a shot of the stingray as it swam away.

However, disaster struck as the stingray turned on Steve.

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Cameraman Justin has opened up about the devastating experience of watching his friend pass away in front of him.

He told Australian morning program Studio 10: "I had the camera and thought this was going to be a great shot. But all a sudden the stingray propped on its front and started stabbing Steve with its tail.

"There were hundreds of strikes within just a few seconds," he added.

The wildlife presenter's final words on earth were captured on camera as he uttered his final words while gasping for air.

Justin recalled Steve surrounded by a pool of blood after the attack before he was pulled back onto the boat.

While Steve fought for his life on the boat, Justin urged him to think of his family – wife Terri and children Bindi and Robert – but sadly, it was too late.

Justin recalled his friend looking up at him before calmly uttering the words: "I'm dying."

The cameraman said: "He just sort of calmly looked up at me and said, 'I'm dying'. And that was the last thing he said.

"We hoped for a miracle. I did CPR on him for over an hour before the medics came, but then they pronounced him dead within 10 seconds of looking at him."

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Steve became internationally famous with his TV series The Crocodile Hunter, which he co-hosted with wife Terri.

The late television star is father to Bindi, 22, and Robert, 17.

Bindi is married to Chandler Powell and she's now expecting her first baby with her husband.

Since the death of Steve, the Irwin family have continued to carry on his animal saving legacy.

  • Steve Irwin

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