Love truly can last a lifetime, even when one of those lifetimes has been cut short. Such is the case for Terri Irwin and the late Steve Irwin. The couple married 30 years ago on June 4, 1992. To mark their commitment to one another, Terri tweeted a photo of Steve and herself with the caption, “I married this incredible bloke thirty years ago today. What an adventure! Love and legacy live on.” Clearly, the candle still burns brightly for the man she married in 1992.
The couple first met in 1991, when Terri stopped by a small reptile park in Australia where Steve was working as a zookeeper at the time. Steve, with his characteristic enthusiasm, excitedly described their meeting as “love at first sight.” The couple married eight months later. In the following years, they welcomed their daughter, Bindi, now 23, and son Robert, now 18.
They were married for 14 years, before Steve died unexpectedly at the age of 44, in 2006. He was struck by a stingray barb while filming off the coast of northern Australia. “No matter what the circumstances are that you lose someone, nobody's truly prepared,” Terri told People in 2018. “Steve's accident was so unexpected, it was extremely challenging. ” As much as it hurts, the Sun still rises the next morning and life must go on.
Terri found the way for life to go on for herself and the kids without bitterness. “We'd each say our favorite part of the day, what we were most looking forward to tomorrow, and a good deed we did that day,” she says. “You can't focus on yourself. You need to focus on what you're doing for others and then you can start to heal.” Terri's love and devotion to Steve, she knew, wasn't going to die, but she found the way to keep it alive for Bindi, who was 7 at the time, and Robert, who was only 2 when their dad passed away. Their memories of their dad would certainly have faded with time had Terri not continued to make Steve a part of their daily lives, carrying on his work and his legacy, his love for life, and his love for his children.
“Steve was someone who was larger than life and really did live life to the fullest,” she says. “Even though he died at 44 years of age, he lived such a full life and that's what I want to do and share.” Both Bindi and Robert have grown to share their parents' passions, devoting their time and influence to wildlife rescue and conservation and working at Australia Zoo, which was founded by Steve's parents, Bob and Lyn Irwin.
Terri's commitment to Steve and their legacy has continued to impact countless lives, and the responses to her anniversary tweet have been overwhelmingly positive and heartfelt. One commenter responded, “When I was younger, I didn't really have anyone in my personal life to show me what true love was…I see now that it was you two that really helped shape my ideas on love, and what an actual happy couple is. My guy and I will be celebrating 9 years in August!” Another commented, “He is and always will be one of my heroes, I owe a lot of who I am and what I love to him and to you and everything you both did together.”
In response to those asking her about her interest in dating or marrying again, Terri says, “I think it's wonderful when people who have lost someone find love again, but I'm not personally looking, and I haven't been on a date in 27 years.” In an interview with The Courier in 2021, she added, “I keep saying this, and I think maybe 15 years later people are finally starting to believe me, Steve was it for me…That's just the way it is. I had a big, big love and it was enough to last a lifetime.”
On June 4, Terri Irwin marked the 30th anniversary of her marriage to the late Steve Irwin with this loving tweet:
I married this incredible bloke 30 years ago today. What an adventure! Love and legacy live on. pic.twitter.com/FEHTYfh5Xf
— Terri Irwin (@TerriIrwin) June 3, 2022
Steve and Terri's daughter, Bindi, and son, Robert, also posted in honor of their parents' anniversary.
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Watch the sweet clip below to hear Steve and Terri tell the story of their first meeting in 1991.