Paul Walker, the handsome actor known for his role in the “Fast & Furious” action movies, has died in a car crash after his friend lost control of a Porsche GT.
The high-powered car, which was being driven by his pal Roger Rodas at a charity event, burst into flames after they crashed in Santa Clarita, California at around 3:30 a.m. on Saturday.
Walker, 40, who appeared in five of the six movies about illegal street racing, had been at an event for his charity Reach Out Worldwide before going on a quick drive in the red Porsche Carrer GT with his friend.
The fundraiser was being held at a race shop, which was to benefit victims of Typhoon Haiyan when the crash happened.
The driver of the car has been identified as former race car driver Roger Rodas, 38, who was also Walker’s financial adviser. The guys were longtime and had been racing for several years before he began managing Walker’s finances.
Rodas had helped Walker establish his Reach Out Worldwide charity, after creating his own foundation to support widows and orphans in his native El Salvador.
Rodas was also the CEO of Always Evolving, the car customization shop where Saturday’s charity event was held.
The star’s representatives and his Facebook page have confirmed his death.
Ame Van Iden, Walker’s publicist, said in an email, “Sadly, I must confirm that Paul did pass away this afternoon in a car accident.”
The actor’s official Facebook page was later updated with the message:
“It is with a truly heavy heart that we must confirm that Paul Walker passed away today in a tragic car accident while attending a charity event for his organization Reach Out Worldwide. He was a passenger in a friend’s car, in which both lost their lives. We appreciate your patience as we too are stunned and saddened beyond belief by this news. Thank you for keeping his family and friends in your prayers during this very difficult time. We will do our best to keep you apprised on where to send condolences. – #TeamPW.”
Paul Walker leaves behind a 15-year-old daughter.
Walker and Rodas decided to take the Porsche GT out for a spin when the tragic wreck happened. A witness by the name of Jim Tort said that Rodas’ eight-year-old son tried to save his dad.
Tort stated, “I ran over afterwards, I was trying to find Roger’s son. I found out his son had jumped the fence and gone over. He was trying to get his dad out”.
Coroner Ed Winters said the bodies were so badly burned they would take days for them to be positively identified.
Friends of the star revealed they grabbed extinguishers to try and put out the fiery blaze.
Antonio Holmes told the Santa Clarita Signal, “We all ran around and jumped in cars and grabbed fire extinguishers and immediately went to the vehicle. It was engulfed in flames. There was nothing. They were trapped. Employees, friends of the shop. We tried. We tried.”
Holmes added, “Him and his buddy, his brother in arms at heart just decided to joyride, take a spin. Something we all do. We’re all car enthusiasts… We’re all here driving, enjoying each other, and God must’ve needed help. When we saw Paul and Roger leave, Paul was the passenger in the vehicle. They both were experienced drivers. ”
Click thumbnails for larger pictures