Widow of Beloved 'Crocodile Hunter' Speaks Out

ByABC News
September 26, 2006, 4:50 AM

Sept. 26, 2006 — -- The widow of "Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin says she is coping with his death "one minute at a time -- sometimes an hour at a time with great faith, great determination," in an exclusive interview with ABC News' Barbara Walters.

In an interview to be aired on "20/20" on Wednesday, Terri Irwin sits down with Walters to remember her husband, discuss his death and talk about her family's future. Steve Irwin died on Sept. 4, when a stingray barb pierced his heart during TV filming in the Great Barrier Reef.

Watch this one-hour "20/20" exclusive on Wednesday at 10 pm ET

The interview is Terri Irwin's first since her husband's death. Walters also sits down the Irwins' two children, Bindi Sue, 8, and Bob, 2, and his longtime business partner and friend, John Stainton, who was with Irwin on the day of his death.

Terri Irwin said she felt blessed to have had to life she did with Steve.

"If I had to do it all over again, even knowing how it ended, I would in a minute," she said. "I feel I was so blessed. I had the best 14 years, two beautiful children, and just a romance like I didn't think existed anymore."

Terri, a native of Eugene, Ore., met her husband at Irwin's Australia Zoo while vacationing in Australia in 1991. Sometimes called the "Crocodile Huntress," she co-starred on her husband's TV show and in his 2002 movie, "The Crocodile Hunter -- Collision Course."

Friends, family members and celebrities paid their final respects to Steve Irwin in speeches and televised tributes at a public memorial service at the Australia Zoo on Sept. 20. His family held a private service for him there on Sept. 9.

Some observers have predicted that Irwin's children will carry on his wild conservationist legacy. Bindi and Bob Irwin made frequent appearances on their father's TV show. Bindi's own TV show is scheduled to debut in 2007.

At the public memorial, there was hardly a dry eye when Bindi Irwin eulogized her father.

"I don't want daddy's passion to ever end," she said. "I want to help endangered wildlife just like he did. I had the best daddy in the whole world," she said.

"I know that daddy had an important job," Bindi continued. "He was working to change the world so that everybody would love wildlife like he did."

The wildlife enthusiast's show "Crocodile Hunter" was broadcast internationally by the Discovery network. Irwin's documentaries were seen by 200 million people around the world.