Paul Walker Crash: Driver's Son Tried to Save Them
Boy, 8, was at the scene
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 1, 2013 11:52 AM CST
File-This March 21, 2013 file photo shows actor Paul Walker.   (AP Photo/Andre Penner, File)

(Newser) – An awful detail from the death of Paul Walker and a friend yesterday: The 8-year-old son of Roger Rodas, who was driving the Porsche when it crashed, tried to save his dad and the actor. The accident happened close enough to Rodas' Always Evolving Performance Motors high-end auto shop that people there heard it, Radar reports. One friend says he ran over and "was trying to find Roger's son," he tells the New York Daily News. "I found out his son had jumped the fence and gone over, he was trying to get his dad out." Walker and Rodas had been at the shop for a car show, arranged by Walker to raise money for victims of Typhoon Haiyan; Walker's 15-year-old daughter was also at the event.

Another friend describes Rodas as Walker's "brother in arms at heart," and says the two "just decided to joyride, take a spin. Something we all do. We're all car enthusiasts." He says a number of people from the shop ran to the scene with fire extinguishers, but couldn't put out the flames engulfing the vehicle. It's still not clear what happened: The friend who found Rodas' son at the scene insists Rodas was "not reckless" and had driven away from the shop slowly; the crash reportedly happened "just one street over" less than a minute after they left. "It was clear the car had hit two trees then finally hit a street lamppost. Parts of the car were strewn everywhere on the street, as far as 150 feet," he says. "I didn't see any skid marks. Where the car had crashed was on a long straightaway. How fast they were going, I don't know."

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Showing 3 of 23 comments
Dec 3, 2013 1:53 AM CST
All the theories and explanations will NOT remove the simple fact that this was just another case of a speeding car that got out of control, either by mechanical failture or driver error. One has only to look at the TOTAL destruction of the car to see that it had to have been going in EXCESS of at least 80 to over a hundred mph to break up like that. As for the conditions of the road, it is a very well paved street and does have straight-a-ways. I have driven on this same road a few times and have not noticed any problem with the design, especially where the accident happened. Only the two conditions mentioned above could have played a role in this crash.
Dec 2, 2013 12:43 PM CST
RIP Paul and Mr. Rodas. I am so sorry that a moment of boyish foolishness took everything from you and your loved ones. A Paul Walker Fan
Dec 1, 2013 10:19 PM CST
It will be interesting to see if turns out to be driver error or a mechanical failure. Normally, cars don't explode on impact, contrary to every TV show and movie ever made... although in real life, some have famously caught on fire lately (cf Tesla). It's hard to say if they were unconscious or killed before the fire, because it depends a lot on the speed and what kind of crash safety there was built in. Smoke inhalation is usually what kills people in fires, not flames, but this was a tiny car interior so the fire could have spread nearly instantly (versus a house where there's a lot of space). Depressing all around.