Later that year, the Irwins jetted to London to give an environmentalism talk. Insiders tell New Idea they paid a secret visit to Buckingham Palace to check in with their friend Charles.
Since then, the Irwins’ friendship has trickled down to the next generation, with Robert, 18, establishing a close connection with Prince William, 39.
Robert was last year announced as an ambassador for Prince William’s climate-change initiative, Earthshot Prize. The two men appeared in a heartfelt televised Zoom meeting between Brisbane and London.
“Honestly, I was big fan of your dad [Steve Irwin] and I am so sorry,” William said at the time. “He’d be very proud of you, Robert, and what you continued. Your passion is second only to his.”
Insiders close to William say it’s the mutual loss of a parent at a young age that drew him to Robert. Wills lost his mother, Princess Diana, in a car accident in 1997, while Robert’s dad Steve died in 2006 following a stingray attack.
“William remembers hearing the news about Steve’s tragic death, and his heart went out to Bindi and Robert, who were so young at the time,” says a source. “He couldn’t have known then that one day he’d be friends with Steve’s son.
“It’s not shown in the public Zoom video, but they had a much longer conversation and have remained in touch since.
“William couldn’t be prouder than to have someone like Robert helping him with Earthshot. Kate and Bindi have popped in to say hello during some of their video links. It’s cute – they like to talk about their kids, and Bindi has introduced adorable baby Grace to the duchess.
“Charles catching up with Terri has turned into a lasting friendship across two generations so far, and who knows – as the Cambridge kids and little Grace grow up, maybe it’ll span into a third.”
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