VALENCIA (CNS/FOX 11) - Thousands of fans and car enthusiasts are expected to take part in a memorial rally and car cruise in Valencia Sunday to remember actor Paul Walker and his friend Roger Rodas, who died in a fiery car crash last Saturday.
The midday memorial was organized largely online, and a Facebook page touting the event indicated that about 6,000 people plan to attend.
Sheriff's officials have been gearing up for the anticipated crowd,
moving some items that had been placed as part of a growing memorial at the
scene of the crash that killed the 40-year-old "Fast and Furious" actor and
the 38-year-old Rodas.
The Nearby North Park Community Church is urging its members to consider
parking farther from the church Sunday to accommodate the expected crowd. The
church has also made arrangements for free coffee and water for people
Walker and Rodas died around 3:30 p.m. last Saturday when Rodas crashed
a high-performance 2005 Porsche Carrera GT into a pole and a tree on Hercules
Street at Kelly Johnson Parkway. Walker was a passenger in the car.
The duo took the 600-horsepower car for a ride after attending a charity
event organized by Walker's Reach Out WorldWide organization, which helps
provide relief efforts in response to natural disasters around the world. The
car burst into flames after the crash.
Coroner's officials said Walker died from a combination of injuries
suffered in the impact and burns from the resulting inferno, while Rodas died
from "multiple traumatic injuries."
Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said speed was a factor in the
crash, but there was no evidence the pair was involved in a street race.
Investigators were still trying to determine exactly what caused the crash and
whether there was a mechanical reason for Rodas to have lost control of the
The results of toxicology tests are pending, and were expected to take
six to eight weeks.
Walker was in the midst of filming "Fast & Furious 7," but production
was shut down after his death. Universal Pictures announced that a portion of
proceeds from upcoming sales of the "Fast & Furious 6" DVD will be donated to
Reach Out WorldWide. The DVD is scheduled to go on sale Tuesday.
Walker's family asked that in lieu of flowers or other gifts, donations
be made to his charity. Information is available online at www.roww.org.
Walker starred as undercover Los Angeles police detective Brian O'Conner
in the 2001 film "The Fast and the Furious" and five of the six sequels,
including the most recent "Fast & Furious 6," which was released in May and
grossed close to $240 million at North American box offices.
Walker was born in Glendale and appeared as a toddler in a Pampers commercial. He was raised in a traditional Mormon family in Sun Valley and graduated from Village Christian High School in 1991. His other credits include "Takers," "Varsity Blues," "She's All That," "Flags of Our Fathers" and "Pleasantville" plus numerous TV guest appearances. Walker appeared in three other films this year besides the "Fast & Furious" sequel and has another film, "Hours," about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, scheduled for release on Friday.
His survivors include his 15-year-old daughter, Meadow Rain.
Event set for noon SUNDAY December 8, 2013 at the crash site, 25690 Hercules St.
Information online at www.facebook.com/socalcarmeets