Paul Walker's Brother Says Star 'Loved Being a Father’ to Meadow, 25: 'He Would Be So Proud' (Exclusive)

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Cody Walker says that his niece "has grabbed the torch" from her late father

<p>Anna Webber/Getty; Ian West/PA Images via Getty</p> Meadow Walker in 2023 (left) and the late Paul Walker

Anna Webber/Getty; Ian West/PA Images via Getty

Meadow Walker in 2023 (left) and the late Paul Walker

Cody Walker says that his late brother, Paul Walker, would be "so proud" of the woman that his daughter, Meadow Walker, has become.

Cody tells PEOPLE in this week's issue that Meadow — who established and serves as the chairman of the Paul Walker Foundation, which honors the actor's "love for the ocean" — "has grabbed the torch" from Paul, who was killed in a car accident nearly 10 years ago.

Asked what he wishes he could tell his brother about Meadow today, Cody says, "I'd want him to know that she has just grown to be such a beautiful young lady."

Today, Meadow, 25, is a professional model who recently walked in Vivienne Westwood and Rokh fashion shows. "She's pursuing a career that's extremely difficult, but she's finding her own way and she's landing success, and he'd be so proud of her," says Cody.

Related: Vin Diesel Pays Tribute to Paul Walker on Late Actor’s 50th Birthday: ‘Brothers for Eternity’

Beyond raising awareness to environmental issues, the Paul Walker Foundation offers grants and scholarships to students and researchers studying marine science and advancing the field as a whole. Meadow announced the founding of the organization in September 2015 to celebrate what would have been her father's 42nd birthday.

<p>AFF-USA/Shutterstock</p> Cody Walker in 2021


Cody Walker in 2021

For more on Cody and Meadow Walker, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.

Cody says that Paul put serious emphasis on fatherhood — but notes the star was conscious of having to "juggle" his acting career and the responsibilities of raising his daughter.

"What I learned from Paul was how quickly these little things grow up," says Cody, who named his third child Paul Barrett Walker after his late brother this year. "Paul was tormented by the fact that his daughter was growing up so fast. He was so busy with his career and trying to juggle all of that."

Meadow was just one when Paul first appeared on screen in his most famous role as Brian O'Conner in The Fast and the Furious. Cody notes that Paul "acknowledged the fact that with his career and everything that he had going on, that he was being robbed of all of that precious time" with Meadow, adding "It really, really ate at him."

Related: Paul Walker’s Daughter Meadow Shares Tribute on Late Actor’s 50th Birthday: ‘My Guardian Angel’

He added of Paul, "He loved being a father."

<p>Frederick M. Brown/Getty</p> Cody (left) and Paul Walker in 2003

Frederick M. Brown/Getty

Cody (left) and Paul Walker in 2003

Paul was a passenger in a 2005 Porsche Carrera GT driven by his friend Roger W. Rodas on Nov. 30, 2013 when Rodas lost control of the vehicle. The Porsche spun out, crashed and became engulfed in flames. The beloved actor died at 40 years old as a result of injuries sustained from the accident.

At the time of Paul's death, Meadow was just 15 years old. A decade later, she has become a shining example of environmental stewardship.

"He was so proud of her," Cody says.

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Read the original article on People.