Paul Walker was best known for his action-packed films, but many are remembering the late actor, who died on Saturday in a fiery car crash, as a big softie with a huge heart.
During the holiday season several years ago, the "Fast & Furious" actor walked into Bailey Banks and Biddle Jewelers in Santa Barbara, California, and, according to sales associate Irene King, what happened next was practically out of a feel-good Hollywood movie.
King told CBS Los Angeles that an associate nudged her and said, “There’s Paul Walker.”
“Oh, OK, yeah,” King replied with a smile. “I said, ‘Yeah, he’s a nice-looking man.’”
Walker was browsing for bling at the same time as a soldier who had just finished his first tour of duty in Iraq, and was looking at engagement rings with his fiancée.
According to King, the pair saw a ring set they liked, but it was way too expensive and boasted a hefty $10,000 price tag.
In comes Walker. The blue-eyed actor called the store's manager and told him to put the ring that the couple was looking at "on his tab," but to keep his identity hidden. He promptly walked out of the store. According to King, the store never told the couple that Walker was the man behind the purchase, and nobody ever knew the sweet story until now.
King posted the story on the 40-year-old actor's Facebook page, among thousands of other anecdotes where people remembered him as "generous," "loving," and with a "heart of pure gold." Walker was a dedicated supporter of charities like the Billfish Foundation, and could always be counted on to raise funds for those in need. He founded his own organization, Reach Out Worldwide, after the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
"To do something like that to a perfect stranger is just unbelievable,” King said.
In this case, it appears that Paul Walker's generosity shined brighter than any diamond.