Steve Irwin, the legendary Australian outdoorsman and original Crocodile Hunter himself, is being celebrated by Google on what would have been his 57th birthday.
Launched on Friday Feb. 22 to tie in with the late Aussie’s birthday and this year’s National Wildlife Day, Google’s latest Google Doodle shows an animated Irwin in his element — exploring the great outdoors, feeding crocs and even kissing a snake. But perhaps the most heart-warming of all are the illustrations of Steve with his wife Terri and kids Bindi and Robert.
The Google Doodle comes almost 13 years after Irwin died suddenly in September 2003, when a barb from a stingray pierced his heart while he was shooting a documentary off the coast of Australia. While the shocking news made headlines around the world, Irwin’s family have continued his life’s work promoting wildlife conservation.
“Losing Steve was a real crossroads for us, but together we decided to continue his mission. Bindi, Robert and I have dedicated our lives to the wildlife conservation work that Steve began,” said Terri Irwin.
“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.'”
To tie in with the animation, Google has also released a trends page to show the global interest and search terms people use around wildlife. There’s also a new Easter egg on Google Assistant — just say “Hey Google, crikey” and the assistant will give you facts about Steve Irwin and his work.
While Steve Irwin might not make it on to Australia’s $100 note, it’s a fitting way to remember an Aussie hero.