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The Untold story of Steve Irwin's original Croc Hunter Team - Tonight on Australian Story

ProgrammingKevin Perry
  Nicole Byrne and Steve Irwin  image - supplied/ABC

Nicole Byrne and Steve Irwin
image - supplied/ABC

Most Australians still remember exactly where they were when they heard about the death of Steve Irwin.

He was mourned publicly by millions and privately by his family and his friends.

Nearly a decade has passed but only now are some of the foundation members of his original team speaking out and reconnecting.   

They include his former Personal Assistant Nicole Byrne and his Crocodile Team right hand man Briano Coulter. 

It had been their “silent understanding” to keep quiet about their boss and mentor. 

"I haven’t opened up about the effect of Steve’s death on me to anyone, not even to my husband.  Because of who Steve was, the world was on fire, the world wanted to know everything and anything to do with Steve at that time. It was like a hot iron and I think a lot of us closed down because you couldn’t trust anyone to open up to or confide in."Nicole Byrne 

But tentatively at first, they have re-established contact and recently organised a joyful reunion with Steve’s father Bob on his property in south east Queensland and shared their stories.

"I hadn’t seen these people for eight years and I was probably a bit apprehensive about it. I’d sort of left their company on what you’d call not a joyous basis and I didn’t know how they’d react." - Bob Irwin

All eventually moved on from Australia Zoo in the traumatic aftermath of Irwin’s death from a stingray barb but all of them are still passionately involved in wildlife projects.                            

It’s taken nearly a decade for them to pick up the pieces but they are finally ready to speak publicly about the impact of Irwin’s life and sudden death and his ongoing legacy....