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Santa Clarita, California (CNN) -- Actor Paul Walker, who shot to fame as star of the high-octane street racing franchise "Fast & Furious," died in a fiery car crash in Southern California on Saturday. He was 40.
Walker was in the passenger seat of a 2005 Porsche Carrera GT, driven by a racing team partner, that slammed into a light pole and burst into flames in an office park in the community of Valencia in Santa Clarita, about 30 miles north of Hollywood.
Walker's publicist Ame van Iden confirmed his death Saturday. The driver, identified by CNN affiliate KCAL-TV as Roger Rodus, also died.
Los Angeles Coroner Investigator Dana Bee told CNN on Sunday it would likely take 48 hours to officially identify the remains taken from the twisted wreckage. The families are gathering dental records for use in the identification, which is necessary because of the condition of the bodies, Bee said.
Speed was a factor in the crash, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office said. A 45 mph speed limit sign was attached to the light pole knocked down by the Porsche.
The wreck took place about 3:30 p.m. just a few hundred yards from Always Evolving, a high-performance car shop owned by Rodus. Both men had attended a holiday toy drive for Walker's charity, Reach Out Worldwide, hosted at the shop Saturday afternoon.
Antonio Holmes told the Santa Clarita Valley Signal newspaper that he was at the charity event when Walker and Rodus left for a ride in the Porsche.
"We all heard from our location," Holmes told the Signal. "It's a little difficult to know what it was. Someone called it in and said it was a vehicle fire. We all ran around and jumped in cars and grabbed fire extinguishers and immediately went to the vehicle. It was engulfed in flames. There was nothing. They were trapped. Employees, friends of the shop. We tried. We tried. We went through fire extinguishers."
A crowd of grieving fans, curious onlookers and media surrounded the crash site for hours, watching as investigators and firefighters worked to extract the bodies from the wreckage. A memorial of flowers, left by fans, remained on the charred roadside Sunday.
Walker and Rodus had planned Saturday as a day to help survivors of victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. The car shop website invited customers to the Charity Toy Drive & Automotive Social Gathering.
"During the holiday season, many economically disadvantaged children from around the world are faced with the same dilemma year after year; the lacking of joy and cheer," the invitation read. "Our goal here is to be able to provide aid to these less fortunate children in hopes of helping them grow up to become confident, responsible and productive young adults."
Walker's charity is described as "a network of professionals with first responder skill-sets who augment local expertise when natural disasters strike in order to accelerate relief efforts."The website lists Rodus as captain and lead driver of the shop's racing team. Walker is also listed as a team driver.</p>