The driver involved in Paul Walker’s deadly car crash on Saturday morning has been identified as Roger Rodas. The man behind the wheel was a longtime friend of Walker and businessman of Hispanic descent who was born in El Salvador.
He had a degree in Finance from California State University and earned many certifications and credentials at The Wharton School of Business. He was a successful businessman who worked for 20 years as managing director/wealth advisor at Bank of America/Merrill Lynch. During that time Barron’s named him one of “America’s Top 1000 Advisors” from 2010 – 2012.
Rodas was also a racecar driver with Pirelli World Challenge, where he won twice in 2012 driving Ford Mustang. In fact, Paul and Roger raced each other in the Pirelli World Challenge Series and other events like the 25 Hours of Thunderhill.
He and Paul Walker, 40, had been friends since 2003 after meeting on the track of a California race club when Walker saw Rodas drive a Porsche GT3 that he used to own.
In 2007, Rodas became Paul Walker’s financial advisor. Both co-owned Always Evolving, a car customization business in Santa Clarita, California.
The deadly crash that took Walkers and Rodas life occurred on Saturday, November 30 at around 3:30p.m. It was near the end of a charity event that their car customization company announced on the company’s website for the nonprofit, Reach Out Worldwide.
“Our next open house and car meet is November 30th from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. We will have complimentary doughnuts and coffee. Please call ahead to confirm, as we may need to cancel due to weather or track events. Please bring a new toy with you, as this meet will be a charity toy drive! Thank you!”
Roger was driving with Paul when the 2005 Porsche Carrera GT struck a tree and burst into flames. Both men were pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.
Rodas, who turned 38-years-old a month ago, was also owner of Cielo Recycling, a Central American recycling plant. According to his biography, he was “instrumental in developing waste to energy power plants and wind farms in Central America.”
Paul Walker left behind a 15-year-old daughter and a girlfriend who he dated for seven years, while Roger Rodas left behind wife Kristine Rodas and two children.
Ongoing investigations on Walker and Rodas crash
Concerns about drag racing were in question after the deadly car crash that took the life of actor Paul Walker and racecar driver Roger Rodas.
The Santa Clarita street where “Fast and Furious” actor and his business partner died had its speed limit increased to 45 mph from 35 mph last year. Law enforcement officials said Monday that the Rye Canyon area is known for street racing and high-powered driving.
After investigations began it was confirmed that racing was not a factor in the accident. However, investigators are still trying to determine how fast the 2005 Porsche Carrera GT was going.
The cars, which have three times the horsepower of the average car, are capable of reaching 60 mph in less than four seconds and 100 mph in less than seven.
According to the L.A. Times, Sheriff’s Deputy Peter Gomez said that they are looking at whether looping tire tracks found on the asphalt on scene are related to the crash, but the investigation is ongoing.