Hey Endless Thread homies, we have something we want to share with you in-between episodes.
In our last story, “Doom Jelly,” we talked to Australian toxinologist Jamie Seymour about box jellyfish and the mysterious, painful Irukjandji syndrome. If you haven’t listened to that yet, get on it! But there was a part of our conversation with Jamie that didn’t quite fit into that episode. It was about his relationship with the famous conservationist and TV personality Steve Irwin, AKA “The Crocodile Hunter.”
Irwin died suddenly in 2006 while filming a documentary for the Discovery Channel off the coast of Australia. A stingray attacked him, piercing his heart with its tail barb. He was 44 years old. Stingrays are generally known as passive, harmless animals, so some were quick to assume that Irwin must have acted irresponsibly or threatened the ray in some way.
Jamie Seymour disputes that narrative. And he would know because he was there when Steve Irwin died.
Yeah, that's not one of the highlights of my life. But yeah, I was in charge on the back deck when we lost Steve, unfortunately. Anniversary of that death was about a week ago, one day after my son's birthday. So, yeah, [it's] something that comes back to me every single year.
Jamie told Ben more about the incident. Take a listen and subscribe to the show if you haven't yet.