Dear Paul Walker

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“I’m gonna carry this torch for you brother, with a forced smile on my face and I’m gonna open my heart just cause you’re telling me to,”
Actress Michelle Rodriguez, on Twitter

Dear Paul Walker:

I want you to know that I was deeply saddened by your tragic death last week.

I never knew you. I might have seen you act in some film. But I did know your face, well.

It was a beautiful face. It had light and kindness in it. You could read the depth of love and joyful spirit in your eyes and could just tell that any friend you had was blessed to have you by their side.

I am deeply grieved for your young teenage daughter. The news reports say she helped anchor your life in these recent years as you had the chance to grow closer finally living together. I am terribly devastated at what your death will do to her but pray she’ll find the courage to survive this.

People have said to me, “You’re just sad because he was a celebrity!” as if your famous status somehow attributes you more attention and sympathy in death than any “ordinary person.”

I wholeheartedly reject this notion!

I am not sad because “a famous person died.”

I am heartbroken because you were of my generation and like myself, a young parent. And to anyone who has a beating heart, that simple fact alone is tragic and upsetting.

I wish I could be angry, as I’m sure those close to you would wish, at something foolish you did to bring about the end. Furious that we could just go ahead and blame you like all the others who have gone before in some reckless way. “Partying and going for a drive!” “Doing drugs!” “Being stupid.”

But you weren’t drunk. You weren’t careless. You were attending a charity event. You were with a friend. You were taking a ride. Who hasn’t done as much?

I’m not condoning fast cars, speed or showing off. In fact, if I was close to you, I’d probably have warned you to be careful or to just skip the ride altogether.

But alas… I am here. You are gone.

And so I will merely say, I wanted you to know that a total stranger down here mourns you too. I pray to God your family and friends hold each other tight as they attempt to navigate their way through this difficult time.

And I lower my head again, for the loss of yet another young soul.

peekiequeen c. December 5, 2013

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