Why Blokes Like Shane Warne & Steve Irwin Were So Damn Likeable

What defines a legend?

Image Credit: (both left & right) Getty Images

It’s no secret that the recent and sudden death of Shane Warne left Australians, as well as people all around the globe, – including celebrities like Robbie Williams, Elizabeth Hurley and Ed Sheeran – absolutely devastated.

It was weirdly nostalgic – in the worst way possible – of when the news broke that Steve Irwin had passed away. The world, just for a moment, stood still in 2006 when it learned that Irwin had died from a stingray barb to the chest, and it did so again just a few weeks ago when Warnie suffered a fatal heart attack.

Warne enjoying the Australian Open with his son, Jackson. Image Credit: @jacksonwarne18

Obviously, this is because both Irwin and Warne were legends in their own right; Irwin was a famed zookeeper and TV personality who taught us that even the scariest of animals still deserve proper care and love, and Warne was a cricketing legend and is considered one of the greatest bowlers in history.

But, I’d argue, the public was also saddened by their deaths because the two Aussie blokes were just so damn likeable. Both possessed a certain charm that made them seem approachable and down to earth, despite their respective accolades.

Both Irwin and Warne were classic Larrikins; friendly, passionate about their work, happy to have a laugh and crack open a beer, authentically themselves (i.e. they clearly didn’t put on a ‘persona’ for the public) and a tad mischievous/cheeky.

They were both incredible fathers; so much so, that we – the public – are now invested in the lives of Bindi & Robert Irwin and Brooke, Summer & Jackson Warne.

Irwin was admiringly fearless. Image Credit: Getty Images

They also loved their down to earth hobbies; Jackson Warne shared in a tribute to his late father that Warne loved playing poker and golf as well as watching football while eating pizza. Whereas, Irwin was purely fearless; he wrestled crocs and happily petted venomous snakes with a huge grin on his face.

Though they are both gone, neither will be forgotten not because of their impressive achievements (although, they’re certainly contributing factors) but mainly because of Irwin and Warne’s similar personality traits that made them both likeable – hell, lovable – not just in Australia, but around the world.

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