December 04, 2013

Rest in peace, Paul Walker.

On Saturday night, I received a text message from a friend. TMZ is saying Paul Walker died! I just knew it was another celebrity death hoax. TMZ's initial headline read, Paul Walker Dead At 40 In Fiery Car Crash. Another website said it wasn't true. For the next hour, I hit refresh over and over again. The story was spreading, but I couldn't find definitive confirmation. I kept holding out hope it was all a bad joke. I eventually clicked over to Facebook and there it was. Paul's official Facebook page had been updated with the news of his death.

I don't claim to know Paul Walker. I'm just a fan. It all started back in 2001 with a little movie called The Fast and the Furious. For me, it was an instant hit. I had the soundtrack. I bought the DVD the day it came out. Even when Vin Diesel opted out of the second one, I still went to the theater on opening night to see it. The same goes for the third one. And the fourth one. And the fifth one. And the sixth one! I still can't believe the success of this franchise. The movies have made over a billion dollars worldwide. I'm obviously not the only one who loves a good car chase.

I have cried several times for this man I've never met. From what I've read about Paul over the years, he was a simple guy. Even though he was a huge star, he didn't surround himself with Hollywood-types. He surfed. He raised his daughter. He created his own charity and donated his time and money countless times. On the day of his death, his charity was raising money for the typhoon victims in the Philippines.

As for my favorite movie franchise, it's up in the air as to whether they'll finish the seventh film. Even if it's over, I'll always have my DVDs. I can look at Paul's baby blues and gorgeous smile any time I want. And, to me, he'll forever be Officer Brian O'Conner.

"I just don’t understand. My heart hurts. It's broken." -- Tyrese Gibson

"I will always love you, Brian, as the brother you were... on and off screen." -- Vin Diesel

"He was motivated by work that allowed him to take care of his family, number one, and that also allowed him the power and the leverage to help people in need and in crisis." -- Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson

"He lived with integrity, humanity and humility and seemed most happy when talking about his daughter, Meadow. I don't know anyone who lived each moment more fully and loved life more than Paul, making his loss all the more heartbreaking." -- Jordana Brewster

"He always stayed out of the Hollywood limelight. He lived in Santa Barbara and was devoted to his family. One thing that people don’t know is how dedicated he was to helping others. He went down to Haiti right after the earthquake and was raising money for people in the Philippines on Saturday. He was just a a great human being. Everyone fell in love with him the minute they met him." -- Frank Marshall

"He believed in God and Heaven. And more than anything, he believed in people. He really believed people were inherently good." -- Jesse Brisendine

You can donate directly to Paul's charity here. Fast and Furious 6 goes on sale next Tuesday, December 10. A portion of all DVD sales will go directly to his charity as well.


Angie said...

I still can't believe this! What was so ironic is I had just bought the first 2 Fast and Furious movies while Black Friday shopping. For some reason I had all but those 2, they had them for super cheap so I had to pick them up. I have always LOVED the movies. I will definitely be there purchasing Fast 6 the day it comes out! And from what I have been reading, he sounded like a really GOOD guy. So "un-hollywood." So sad!

Unknown said...

Celebrities have come and gone, but for some reason, his passing feels personal. It's really been weighing on me. For me, he was Lance Harbor first. But the Fast & Furious movies were fast to become some of our favorite movies. We purchased each F&F movie as they came out and I've already pre-ordered the 6th installment. The whole situation is so terribly sad.

Whitney Alison said...

He always struck me as down to earth and so...normal. I've never heard anyone say a bad word about him in interviews. They always talk about how amazing and giving he was. i've read so many stories over the past few days about fans and their encounters with him and how generous he was with his time. I loved these movies. I've seen every single one, I don't know how many time. I've seen so many other Paul Walker movies. I started sneaking off to the street races here in town when I was in high school after this movie came out. I dated a guy with 10 second car. We all wanted a piece of that life for a bit. He influenced a whole generation of us. He will be so missed. My heart goes out to his daughter and family. I knew you'd do this post justice. Kudos girl.

Kelly @ turned UP to ELEVEN! said...

I have always found him attractive, and I've always liked him in the FF movies - although I've only seen I think the first 2, maybe 3 - I gave up after Tokyo Drift and only had a faint interest in the recent one due to The Rock... BUT he seemed like such a great guy. Down to earth and like you said, simple. Untouched by the Hollywood hoopla.

What a great tribute to a beautiful man! :)

Mrs. M said...

Such a tragic loss.

Jenna said...

He seems like he was a genuine soul. I have not heard one negative thing about him, before or after his untimely death. My heart breaks for his loved ones, especially his daughter.

My heart also goes out to the family of Roger, the driver of the car.

Rest in Peace and in Love

Natalie said...

I've teared up over this loss several times too. I never met this man bug it just seems so tragic and senseless.

And yes, he will always be Lance Harbor.

Karen M. Peterson said...

I used to joke that I was allergic to Paul Walker because I never liked his movies. But this is so sad and my heart goes out to his family and his many, many fans.

Christina said...

So, so sad. He was a great guy! I still have never seen even one F&F movie. I really want to watch them now.

Kelly said...

I am so saddd!!!!

Sparkles and Shoes

Emmett Katherine said...

it doesn't quiet seem real, does it? so sad and tragic he died so young.

Helene in Between said...

so neat about Paul's charity! thanks for spreading the word! makes me so sad!