Good morning everybody. Firstly, to Terri and all of Steve’s family, from my family to yours, our deepest sympathies and condolences. I think this memorial should be a joyful one, and not mournful one. We, after all, have to keep in mind who we are here to celebrate, and what he would have preferred. I hope somebody will speak today of the specifics of what Steve achieved as a conservationist, but all I can do today is talk directly to my friend, my mate, Steven.
Your passing has suspended reality for all of us. It was way too soon, and completely unfair on all accounts. I know as humble as you always were, that you would still be pleased to know that the world sends its love and that people all over this planet have been grieving. We’ve all lost a friend, we’ve lost a champion, and we’re gonna take some time adjust to that.
I’m in New York, mate – the big city – and you have been headline news on CNN for a week. There are not many Zoo keepers who would command that attention, mate. And all that means is that you got your message across. You got the word out there. And you were heard. And you will be remembered.