Sad news to report. Paul Walker, a star of the Fast & Furious movie franchise, died tonight in a car accident, according to his publicist
“Sadly, I must confirm that Paul did pass away this afternoon in a car accident,” publicist Ame van Iden confirmed to CNN Entertainment. She said she could not elaborate beyond statements posted on Walker’s official Twitter and Facebook accounts.
A post on Walker’s Facebook page said, “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.”
The website for the charity indicated there was an event in Southern California on Saturday to benefit victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
Along with Vin Diesel, the 40-year-old Walker has been one of the stalwarts of the “Fast & Furious” movie series, characterized by its racing scenes and attractive cast.
ETA: Via the Daily Beast:
According to TMZ, “the actor was in a Porsche when the driver somehow lost control and slammed into a post or tree… and then the car burst into flames.” The actor was in Santa Clarita, Los Angeles, for a car show to support relief efforts for Typhoon Haiyan, which ravaged the Philippines, on behalf of his humanitarian aid team REACH OUT Worldwide. CBS Local reported that the crash occurred around 3:30 p.m. PT in the 28300 block of Rye Canyon Loop in Valencia, and when officials arrived at the scene, they found the vehicle “fully engulfed in flames.” After the Los Angeles County Fire Department put out the fire, two victims were found inside the wreckage and pronounced dead at the scene. The County Coroner is still waiting to determine the official cause of death, and identify the second victim.
The actor had a recurring role on the soap opera, The Young and the Restless and starred in movies, Meet the Deedles, Varsity Blues, She’s All That, Pleasantville, The Skulls, Joy Ride, Running Scared, Flags of Our Fathers and Eight Below.
Walker was in the middle of filming Fast & Furious 7. Brick Mansions and Hours are films set to be released in the next couple of months.
His 15 year old daughter, Meadow Rain, that he had with an ex-girlfriend moved into his Santa Barbara home in 2012.
Nobody was walking away from that…
ETA: The driver was Walker’s business associate via The Wrap
The driver of the car was identified by Santa Clarita Valley-area AM news station KHTS as Roger Rodas, CEO of Always Evolving, Walker’s high-performance motorworks company and racing team with headquarters near the crash. The station cited an employee of one of Walker’s two Valencia-based companies; messages left with Always Evolving were not immediately returned Saturday night.
ETA: The body was burned so badly, the autopsy has been postponed. Via TMZ
Paul Walker’s body was burned so badly the coroner needs his dental records to identify the body … TMZ has learned.
A rep for the L.A. County Coroner tells us … the bodies of Paul and his friend/business partner Roger Rodas are currently unidentifiable and their autopsies will be delayed until later this week.
We’re told the coroner is waiting on both sets of dental records before proceeding.
Rodas — who was driving the Porsche yesterday — was friends with Walker for nearly a decade … and Roger has been credited with helping Paul start his race shop.
The two also joined forces to create the “Reach Out World Wide” Foundation to help disaster relief in other countries — and as we first reported … the group was behind yesterday’s fundraiser for typhoon relief in Santa Clarita.
Paul’s rep says Roger and Paul were leaving the event when they wrecked.