"If I'm going to die," the late "Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin said in a 2002 interview, "at least I want it filmed."
He spoke with his usual humor, and clearly had no idea what would happen four years later. But the fact is, a tape does exist of Irwin's fatal encounter with a stingray while filming a TV show. And so the question arises: In the age of instant Web videos, might it get out? And in the broader sense, is making footage of a death public ever justified? Read more.
FNC wants to know what YOU think — Should video of Steve Irwin's death be released?
E-mail us at email@example.com and jump into the debate!
Check out what FOX Fans are saying:
"I agree with those who think his wife should be the only person who decides whether the 'death tape' is shown. Steve, and his wife were a great couple — dedicated to animals great and small. Personally, I would NOT want to see the actual video of such a great guy's death." — Larry (Alpine, TX)
"No, we don't need to see everything — especially someone's accidental death. Allow the man and his family some dignity." — Wince (Clermont, FL)
"No, the tape of his Steve Irwin's death should not be released. Show some civility respect to his family." — Sue (Colorado Springs, CO)
"Yes, it should be. Not for the crudeness of the fact but for the understanding of how it happened. Steve was always open with his public and honest. The video would only help people understand what exactly Steve stood up against on a day-to-day basis dealing with the wildlife." — C.H (North Carolina)
"Absolutely not! It is not the publics business to see that, and I seriously doubt that it will bring ANY comfort to his family and friends. That video needs to be put away somewhere, or given to the family to decide what should be done with it. For that video to be publicly displayed shows disrespect for Steve and his family." — Valencia
"Steve Irwin made his wishes known. Show the video." — WEA (Bismarck , ND)
"I certainly do not wish to see his death. I had much rather remember him as he was on his shows! A lot of children would probably be very upset at seeing his death!" — Jean (Blountsville, AL)
"It speaks such sadness about our society that this would be an issue. Absolutely not!" — Jeff (Rogers, AR)
"I believe that it should only be released with Terri's permission. She knew him best. It was her husband and soul mate. She would be the most appropriate judge as to if it should be released to the public." — Jen
"I hope the cameraman destroys that thing before somebody has an opportunity to force something. Showing it can serve nothing. His wife, children, and father should not have to endure the public's insatiable demand for gore. He's gone. Let's enjoy the memories and the films of who he was and what he stood for." — Valerie
"Yes, I think the video should be aired. Steve would want that. He would want people to remember him by what he loved doing." — Lynn
"On one hand, I think it's sick to make public such a video. On the other, maybe it would show people what happens when you get too close to where you should not be." — Stephen
"Yes, let it be seen. I would like to know if by pulling the barb out, it created a hole and caused his death." — Donna
"I don't feel it makes a difference one way or another what I want because there are many others to make decisions long before me but ultimately I can decide for myself and not for every one else." — Pat (Findlay, OH)
"This is a decision that only the family can and should make. Their wishes should be listened to." — Sharon (Augusta, KY)
"Yes I would be interested in seeing the film, but only with the approval of his wife. My only thought is that Steve Irwin lived his life in front of the camera, and as he stated in the 2002 interview, if he died, he wanted his death on film." — Don
"Yes it should be released because that is what he would have wanted." — Jim (Telluride, CO)
"Steve Irwin's death tape should remain sealed for the sake of his children. His wife should have the choice to see it, and the children should be given the right to choose when they become adults, but in the meantime it is more important to protect them than it is for any rubber-necker to be able to witness the tragedy. I pray that they can grow up remembering their father with the love and respect he deserves." — Pam (Jonesboro, GA)
"Steve made it clear he wanted the cameras rolling if and when he met his demise. Crikey! Show it. No one can force someone to view it." — Lisa (San Diego, CA)
"No the whole video should not be shown. They should delete the last part of the video and destroy it (or at least put it in a vault). His wife should decide when and if this should ever be seen. She may want that part to be destroyed. His wife should be the one to say when the rest of the video can be viewed by the public." — Lauretta
"No to showing the video. I would hate the vision of how he died to be the way he was remembered. His smile and energy was the true person to be remembered." — Vickie (Collierville, TN)
"I think Steve would want the film to be released. There are shark and gator attacks that are shown, and he would want this to be educational if nothing else. That is what his life has been dedicated to!" — Bradley
"No! The videotape of Mr. Erwin's death should not be shown. His death is tragic enough. Showing the video would only make it worse for his family and his fans." — Janice"Ultimately it should be the family who decides. But, I must admit this morbid curiosity that I have about it. If it aired, would I watch it? Honestly, I might. But the sad thing is that with the short-attention span that I and millions of other Americans have, I doubt it would leave an impression. I just wish his family well and hope they are respected." — Janet (Seattle, WA)
"I'd prefer that it not be released, as I see no tangible benefit from doing so and it seems disrespectful. An accurate report of the events will suffice, and even that should be cleared with his family. I'm sure there are others who feel otherwise, but it's time we learn to respect the wishes of others and show some respect for the deceased." — Phil (Rensselaer, NY)
"No, the video should not be aired. We know he died, we know the circumstances and when. That is really all we need to know. A video serves no useful purpose and his last moments on this earth should be kept private." — Diann
"I think that viewing a well-known celebrity’s death would be the height of crudeness. We all now know exactly how it happened from eyewitness accounts. Why people want so much to put more bad images and thoughts into their heads is beyond me, because it certainly isn’t healthy and puts emphasis on the wrong things. They should be celebrating what he did for wildlife, not dwelling on the last few moments of his life." — Julie (Florida)
"The video of Steve Irwin's death should only be made public if it fully endorsed by his widow Terri." — Mike (Long Island, NY)
"No! The video should not be released so soon. Maybe in a few years, if the family approves and it is part of a historical presentation. I have no desire to see someone killed, accidentally or otherwise, just so the news media can fill some time." — Thomas (Ozark, AL)