• Steve Irwin wowed audiences as the host of the popular series "The Crocodile Hunter"
  • He grew up on a wildlife park owned by his parents
  • He died at the age of 44 and is survived by his wife and two children 

Friday marks the death anniversary of Australian wildlife enthusiast Steve Irwin who died in 2006 after he was pierced in the chest by a stingray barb.

Irwin, who wowed audiences as the host of the popular series "The Crocodile Hunter," grew up on a wildlife park owned by his parents. He spent most of his time handling venomous snakes and crocodiles or rescuing animals in need of help.

On Sept. 4, 2006, Irwin died of cardiac arrest shortly after he was stung by a stingray barb while on a diving expedition off the coast of Port Douglas in Queensland. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Here are a few inspirational quotes by the conservationist, courtesy the Famous People.

  • "I believe that education is all about being excited about something. Seeing passion and enthusiasm helps push an educational message."
  • "My job, my mission, the reason I’ve been put onto this planet, is to save wildlife. And I thank you for comin’ with me. Yeah, let’s get 'em!"
  • "Crocodiles are easy. They try to kill and eat you. People are harder. Sometimes they pretend to be your friend first."
  • "I have no fear of losing my life - if I have to save a koala or a crocodile or a kangaroo or a snake, mate, I will save it."
  • "If we can teach people about wildlife, they will be touched. Share my wildlife with me. Because humans want to save things that they love."
  • "It never ceases to amaze me how cruel some people are. Do you think people would be so merciless and torturous if fish and sharks cried like babies when they felt pain?"
  • "If you can’t excite people about wildlife, how can you convince them to love, cherish, and protect our wildlife and the environment they live in?"
  • "We humans still have a long way to go with learning to live harmoniously with our environment and its wildlife."
  • "The truth is that we will never save wildlife by killing it."
  • "If we save our wild places, we will ultimately save ourselves."

Steve Irwin 'The Crocodile Hunter', Steve Irwin, poses with a three-foot-long alligator at the San Francisco Zoo in San Francisco, California, June 26, 2002. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images