As the whole world grieves for more than 1 billion animals that have been killed in the Australian bushfires and the number of various other animals killed – everyone’s favorite kangaroos and koalas among them – is still skyrocketing, an Aussie artist offered the world a sketch that brought at least a little peace of mind to all the people affected or touched by the ongoing devastation caused by the bushfires. Now located in Georgia, artist Shania-Mae Sturm was thinking about the terrors devastating her home country and a single comforting thought popped into her head – at least all the animals are now going into the loving arms of Steve Irwin, waiting for them in heaven. After all, Steve and his family were always ones to stand by the animals and as he might be consoling the poor animals that have been killed in heaven, his family with his 16-year-old son Robert, who’s seen fighting back tears while talking about the devastation, are continuing his legacy and is trying to help as many animals as possible and have already helped over 90,000.

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Artist Sharnia-Mae Sturm, 22, shared the poignant illustration on New Year’s Eve as news of Australia’s bushfire crisis broke around the world

Image credits: sketchykoala

Shania-Mae Sturm’s sketch of the late Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin welcoming animals in heaven with open arms, saying, “Don’t worry little guys! I’ll take care of you!” went viral all over the world since she posted it both on her Instagram and her Facebook page on New Year’s Eve, as the whole world was about to celebrate the beginning of 2020 while Australia was ablaze.

A Georgia-based Aussie artist came up with the idea while thinking about all the animals that have passed away and suddenly realized they’d all be safe in the loving arms of Steve Irwin

Image credits: sketchykoala

“It’s absolutely devastating. This is by far the worst I’ve seen the fires. It’s all I see on my newsfeed, flames, dead animals, worn-out firefighters and devastated Aussies,” said Sturm. “I feel so bad for everyone, I wish I could send the Georgian rain to Australia. … I do miss Australia, it will always be part of who I am.” When asked about how she came up with the idea, she said: “My mind wandered to the animals and how they would be so confused and stressed, then this idea popped in my head,” she said. “The animals who have passed on are now safe in Steve Irwin’s arms. I really hope my drawing brings peace of mind and hopefully a relieved smile to the people who see it.”

People were moved by the cartoon with many saying it brought them to tears