Paul Walker

by Khiem Nguyen from Newark, California

131934Paul Walker standing next to the legendary Nissan Skyline Gt-r spark. A force that starts off as something small but in essence is the reason for the creation of a change the could shape lives for the better. There are millions of sparks, some bigger than others, some smaller. But there lies one that has change many lives including mine for the better and reshaped the car culture overnight. His name is Paul Walker a.k.a Brian O’Connor.

131935Paul Walker as a child in a Tv Show was like anyone at first, conceived in Glendale, California. Went to a normal school, went into acting like any other actor. His first ever film wasn't even a movie. He was acting in the sitcom Throb back in 1986. Bet a lot of you didn't even know that. Though you may have known the first movie he starred in, Tammy and the T-Rex. Yeah I guess you probably don't know that. But what really hit the world hard, and what he’s known for (hopefully intentionally) is cars. The debut of the street racing scene. The movie that introduced the world and more importantly me to how cool cars could be.

131937The Fast and The Furious (2001) DVD Cover was a long time ago, almost 15 years ago. The Fast and The Furious made its debut in 2001. Three years following I was given the ability to watch it. It was awe-striking, and my world changed. Unlike most car enthusiasts at the time, I knew nothing. I was a fresh slate. Everyone else was in shock of how this man, who dumped not more than $20k into a junker Toyota, could go toe to toe with an American beast known as a dodge challenger. I however, because I gravitated towards his car, was enthralled. I’ve never seen something so cool ever. A car, made from a brand that made simple Corollas and Camrys and Pruises could outbeat a beastly boat out on the streets. I went nuts when I saw that and I’m sure others did too.

132007Brians Signature Skyline toys moment shook the car world. Soon I as well as everyone else began buying the inexpensive tuner cars (toys in my case), modifying them, and of course taking them racing (legally of course). It was amazing: soon cars pushing monster levels of power were coming out of some common thing you found every day on the streets. More and more aftermarket shops and vendors arose, making it easier to buy and mod a car. It was “carazy.” One movie did that. It shook the world and introduced people to such a society in which anyone could have a fun and fast car. The tuner scene kick off with that movie and reshaped how America and other countries saw Japanese cars. We fell in love with them.

That brings me to the end of my mini-rant on how much Paul Walker did to the community. Many people honor his legacy in cars with shows like the Paul Walker Memorial Ride, or remake his cars from the show. Paul also used to race cars professionally and many have been inspired by that and took up racing in little series. The end-all, be-all of what I’m trying to say is, he (along with the rest of the cast) reshaped the world and cars. He also reshaped me. He is the biggest reason why I love cars, and when I get mine soon, I’ll be just like the hero that inspired me to like them in the first place.

Works Cited:

“In Memory of Paul Walker: 5 Things You May Not Have Known.” Raindance, 24 Jan. 2017,

Kelly, et al. “Paul Walker.” IMDb,,

Lee, Kristen. “That Famous 'If Speed Kills Me' Quote Isn't Actually From Paul Walker.” Jalopnik, Jalopnik, 29 Mar. 2017,

Media, Donut. “How FAST AND FURIOUS Created Modern Car Culture | Donut Media.” YouTube, YouTube, 27 Aug. 2018,

Runkle, Michael Van. “25 Sick Cars From Paul Walker's Collection.” HotCars, HotCars, 4 June 2018,


Page created on 3/29/2019 8:00:21 PM

Last edited 9/2/2021 11:05:38 PM

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