My phone blew up the moment the news broke. I had no idea why my phone was going nuts but after so many dings, something in my heart told me it was bad news. My gut had a feeling something was wrong. Sure enough my instincts were right and for the first time I wish they were wrong. My favorite actor, Paul Walker, who I’ve loved for as long I could remember, passed away. As soon it happened, I knew I wanted to pay a tribute on the site; it was just a matter of time before I could finally sit down and write my piece. After working on it and figuring out what to say for almost two months, here it is.
When the Gleeks lost one of their own last year, I couldn’t imagine what they were feeling, how they were coping of someone they’ve never met, or personally knew but meant a whole lot. Although I knew the actor and sympathized for all who were taking it hard, I couldn’t fully understand it. Until Walker’s passing, that is.
On November 30, 2013 Paul Walker died in a car crash in California after leaving his charity event. The world instantly reacted to the devastating news: some were shocked, speechless, heartbroken and in disbelief. I was one of them.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Walker’s death is there’s no book or manual to tell you how to grieve for someone you never met but gave you so much to remember. That’s exactly how I feel. I have no idea how to express my feelings for someone I spent almost my entire life following his career, but as I heard in a song (to be specific, Scotty McCreery’s “Dash”) “it ain’t about the numbers chiseled in concrete, it’s how they lived their lives in the dash between.” Rather than focusing on his death, let’s look back on the amazing life he lived and the work he’s done.
Meet the Deedles (1998)
This is the first Paul Walker movie I’ve ever seen and despite the horrible acting and the bad storyline, there was something about this movie that made me love everything about it and made me rent it out a million times at the video store. That video store is now closed and only wish I had kept the VHS tape, as it’s now a very rare movie. (If anyone knows where I can get it, contact me ASAP!) Walker was such a young fella in this movie and of course his good looks instantly caught my eye, and that is the start of it all.
November 4, 1999 – Fatherhood
Walker welcomed a baby girl, Meadow Rain Walker, with his girlfriend (now ex). Walker always lit up when he talked about his little girl, but never shared too much. At first, I thought why would he hide her from everyone, until I got older I understood he’s just being a good father by trying to protect her from the crazy fame, as he doesn’t care about the fame and glory that comes with his job. He was humble and setting an example to his daughter. Those closest to him always went on how great of a father he was.
She’s All That (1999)
This was one of the best movies ever made, and no matter how good Walker looked in his tan, with his beautiful blue eyes, and great hair, his character Dean Sampson was that good looking guy in high school all the girls loved but also happened to be the jerk we all hate. I love Walker, but man did I hate him in this movie. He certainly nailed the role.
January 2010: REACH OUT Worldwide (ROWW)
When the earthquakes hit Haiti, Walker noticed there weren’t a lot of trained medical professionals to help with those in need and grabbed some of his friends to help form a non-profit organization called Reach Out Worldwide (ROWW.) According to the ROWW official website, they are a quick-response, mobile first aid organization aiding in rescue and recovery after major natural disasters around the globe. Walker made an impact, and inspired so many as he wanted to help people by providing survival skills when needed the most. He wanted to make a difference in the world, and he did. (You can donate to ROWW right here: https://www.roww.org/donate )
This was Walker’s final and completed movie he’s done, and as much as I wished it was a Fast and Furious movie, I’m glad to see it was this one instead. Walker’s performance is nothing like we’ve ever seen. You’re probably thinking I’m only saying that because it’s his last movie, but I’m not. In this movie, he shows how much he’s grown over the years. Walker’s emotions were highly and very well expressive with every scene and every moment. Walker’s performance in this movie is completely different from what we’re used to; he’s not illegally racing cars, or working for a mob. He’s a father who’s willing to do anything to save, protect, and keep his daughter alive during Hurricane Katrina.
Fast and Furious Franchise (2001-2014)
This franchised made Walker’s career. A lot of fans love fast cars and action, and instantly fell in love with his character Brian O’Conner who was a good cop turned to one of America’s Most Wanted for the sake of family. Very few don’t understand why they continue to make more of these movies as they are “all the same” but truth is each movie is different, especially as the characters grow. Walker’s character is definitely one of them and definitely a fan favorite. Production is currently on hold since Walker death. However, the studio has announced that even though he didn’t finish his scenes he will be in the movie and they will not kill off his character. Instead, they will have him retire from the fast life. As well, they’ve announced the release date has been pushed until 2015.
I could go on and on about Walker’s film career as he’s done over 40 projects, produced a few projects, and although we all loved him on the big screen, it wasn’t exactly the reason why most people and I liked him. He was a down to earth guy, who didn’t let the Hollywood Fame get to him, but loved his fans (as shown in this Fast & Furious 6 interview below at the 1:20 mark).
Paul Walker was someone’s father, son, brother, friend, co-worker, and a role model to many others. Walker touched the lives of so many as he was kind, smart, funny, made a difference in the world, and so much more. He may be gone, but he certainly left his mark and no one will ever forget him, as he’ll always be remembered.