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Cartoon of Steve Irwin welcoming animals to heaven goes viral

It’s estimated one billion animals have died as the result of bush fires in Australia
Steve Irwin
This cartoon depicts Australian zoologist Steve Irwin, who died in 2006, welcoming animals to heaven. Cartoon by Sharnia-Mae Sturm.

“Don't worry little guys! I'll take care of you.”

The touching cartoon of zoologist and wildlife expert Steve (Crocodile Hunter) Irwin, who died in 2006, welcoming animals killed in the ongoing bushfires in Australia to heaven, was created by Australian artist Sharnia-Mae Sturm.

The image shows Irwin opening his arms to greet the animals. It’s estimated a billion animals, including kangaroos and koala bears, have died as the result of the devastating fires. Sturm shared her illistration on Instagram on New Year's Eve as Australia's bushfires reached a crisis stage.

So far the fires have killed at least 24 people, placed thousands more in danger and destroyed millions of acres of land.

Anyone looking to help can make a donation to one of these agencies:

Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery

NSW Rural Fire Service

Victorian Bushfire Relief

WIRES: New South Wales' Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service

sthomas@vancourier.com

@sthomas10