ABC 15 anchor Steve Irvin leaves the Phoenix news station

Steve Irvin, the longtime ABC 15 News anchor in Phoenix, is stepping down.

Irvin’s final newscast will be on Wednesday at 6 p.m.

“I’m excited,” Irvin, who has worked at the station since 2002, said of his impending departure. “It’s a new chapter in my life. I thought about it so much and put so much planning and effort into it. I’m well past the point of having any regrets or doubts about it. I wanted to make it a thorough process, so I decided to do what I did.

Irvin announced in November 2021 that he would leave the station, citing health issues and work stress, including heart scare. He echoed this in the days leading up to his departure.

“At the end of the day, my priority is my health and having dinner with my wife,” Irvin said. “So those are the things that I really want to do, and I can do it. These things were more important than reporting the news.

“They were always more important than reporting the news, but at some point I felt like it was the right thing to do.”

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Irvin is interested in pursuing voiceover work and teaching

Irvin has drawn praise and criticism, depending on his willingness to expose lies and misinformation. His Twitter feed provides many examples. It’s a welcome change from robotic anchors springing out of false equivalencies in stories.

“One of the big questions for me is if I’m going to continue on social media,” Irvin said. “That could be my outlet. Maybe that’s where I’m digging. Because I’m talking about it now and there are 20 or 30,000 people who like it. I could keep doing this.

Irvin said some people approached him about getting into politics. He doesn’t seem interested, but said he would pursue voice-over work and teaching opportunities. But he’s done with the news, at least for now.

“I was very honest about the reasons,” he said. “It scared me. I think it would scare anyone, knowing you’re a ticking time bomb. You could have a heart attack at any time, and that’s it, you’re done. I didn’t want to not die on the job.

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