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Sunday, December 1, 2013

Fast & Furious Star, Paul Walker, Dies in Car Crash





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The star of  the "Fast & Furious" movie series, Paul Walker (40), died Saturday in a car crash that killed one other person outside of Los Angeles.

A Facebook status on Walker's page said he was a passenger in a friend's car, and that Walker was in the area to attend a charity event for his organization Reach Out Worldwide, for a fundraiser to benefit victims of Typhoon Haiyan.

The LA Sheriff's Department reported speed was a factor, in the crash that sent the Porsche Carrera GT crashing into a light pole before bursting into flames in Valencia, just north of Los Angeles. The two people found in the car were pronounced dead at the scene.

The Santa Clarita Valley Signal reported that the Porsche crashed into a light pole and tree and burst into flames. The fundraiser, to benefit victims of Typhoon Haiyan, took place at a nearby racecar shop. Attendees rushed to put out the flames with fire extinguishers to no avail.

"All of us at Universal are heartbroken," Universal Pictures, which has released the "Fast & Furious" franchise, said in a statement. "Paul was truly one of the most beloved and respected members of our studio family for 14 years, and this loss is devastating to us, to everyone involved with the 'Fast and Furious' films, and to countless fans."

His "Fast & Furious" co-star Vin Diesel posted a photograph of him and Walker arm-in-arm on Instagram with the message: "Brother I will miss you very much. I am absolutely speechless."

"Your humble spirit was felt from the start," Ludacris, Walker's "Fast & Furious" co-star, said on Twitter. "Wherever you blessed your presence you always left a mark, we were like brothers."

"Fast & Furious" proved unusually enduring. Released in May, "Fast & Furious 6" was the most lucrative of them all, grossing more than $788 million worldwide. The seventh installment began shooting in September, with a release planned for July. The film's production was on break with more shooting to be done.

Walker formed Reach Out Worldwide in 2010 to aid people struck by natural disasters.
A friend of Walker's who attended the fundraiser Saturday, Bill Townsend, told AP Radio, "He was very happy. He was smiling at everybody, just tickled that all these people came out to support this charity. He was doing what he loved. He was surrounded by friends, surrounded by cars."

Walker is survived by his 15-year-old daughter.

Our prayers go out to his daughter and the rest of the family. 

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