Bindi Irwin will turn to her family to make her wedding day one that her late father would be proud of. The Dancing With the Stars alum, who recently announced her engagement to longtime love Chandler Powell, told Entertainment Tonight she plans to honor the memory of her father, Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin, during her upcoming wedding.
Bindi, who lost her famous father to a tragic accident in 2006 when she was only eight years old, said she has been dreaming of her wedding day since she was a little girl. But in the wake of her father’s death, the nature conservationist said there is only one person who can walk her down the aisle in his absence: her younger brother, Robert Irwin.
Bindi told ET that it is important to her that her brother takes on their father’s role in her wedding because he has been such a big part of her life.
“I’m always so grateful that Robert is there, and he has been such a big part of my life and he’s always stepped up and been the one to give me a hug when I need it and encourage me forward in life. So he will definitely be the one to walk me down the aisle when the time comes, and I think that will make it really special. And I think that’s what dad would have wanted as well.”
In addition to her brother’s role in the wedding, Bindi shared that she will likely do a special dance with her mother, Terri Irwin, in place of the traditional father-daughter dance. Bindi revealed that she and her mother are very close and that Terri has been the pillar of her strength throughout her life.
“When the time comes, Robert will walk me down the aisle, [Chandler and I] will have our wonderful moment and I’ll have my dance with mom. I think that would be wonderful.”
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The most beautiful surprise. Chandler and Robert worked together to capture the moment I said ‘YES’. We were in the gardens of Australia Zoo and it was beyond perfect. I never even knew Robert was there photographing and I’ll always be grateful to have these special memories of the most amazing day of my life. ❤️
It was just last week that Bindi Irwin and former pro wakeboarder Chandler Powell shared the news of their engagement to Instagram, prompting well-wishes from fans and famous friends, including the bride-to-be’s Dancing With the Stars partner, Derek Hough.
In a series of sweet social media posts, the Animal Planet star revealed that her brother Robert helped Chandler pull off the surprise proposal that took place in the gardens of Australia Zoo, the site of the family’s reality show. Still, while she praised the “perfect” proposal that had her surrounded by animals, Bindi admitted that not having her dad to share the special moment with has been extremely difficult for her because she knows that her dad would have loved her fiancé and would have gladly welcomed him into the family.
While her wedding planning is just beginning, Bindi has already told Entertainment Tonight that she wants to exchange vows with Chandler at Australia Zoo because that is where she feels “closest” to her late father.
“For me, at the heart of it all, I want to make sure that my mum is there, my brother is there, and that it’s a really close family event and we’ll remember Dad, whether it’s a clip that we play of Dad or something that just reminds us of him.”
The Crikey! It’s the Irwins star also teased the possibility of a televised wedding, which would be the ultimate tribute to her late TV star dad. The animal lover teased that there will definitely be some engagement exclusives on the show when it returns to U.S. television later this fall.