Paul Walker was commemorated by his daughter Meadow on the one-year anniversary of his death Sunday, as she posted a heartbreaking and beautiful baby photo of herself on the knee of her beaming — and very youthful-looking — dad.
In the photo, Paul Walker is just 25- or 26-years-old, a period in which the then-unknown actor was struggling to launch his career, taking small roles in such films as Pleasantville and Meet the Deedles.
Meadow Walker, clad in an adorable baby dress with too-cute sunhat, appears to be less than one — and as a baby it looks like she could not have been happier just to be sitting on her daddy’s knee.
The now 16-year-old daughter of Paul Walker posted the photo to Instagram November 30, one year to the day after her father passed away in a high-speed auto accident that also killed Walker’s close friend and business adviser Roger Rodas, 38. Meadow Walker captioned the photo with a simple “I love you.”
She included no further explanation regarding where the photo was taken or who took it. But the lovely snapshot appears to have been captured in someone’s basement. Paul Walker sits waving at the camera with his head bent down slightly to avoid bumping exposed wooden floor beams above him.
Paul Walker fathered Meadow, his only child, in 1998 with his then-girlfriend Rebecca Soteros. But Soteros and Walker never married because Walker believed at the time he was not mature enough for marriage.
“I knew where I was at with chicks and having fun. I mean, I was sleeping with her (Rebecca’s) friends, for crying out loud. You know what I mean?” Walker said, in an interview not long before his death. “I was an animal, and so I want to be there and my heart wants to be in it, but the mind just isn’t following it. I love my daughter so much, and I love her mom too. We get along so well as a result of me playing it the way that I did.”
Meadow Rain Walker spent most of her young life living with her mother in Hawaii, relocating to live with her movie star dad in Santa Barbara, California, shortly before his death.
Following Walker’s death on November 30, 2013, Walker’s mother fought Soteros for legal custody of Meadow, citing Soteros’s alleged alcoholism as a reason why she was not fit to keep full custody of the teen, who was the sole heir to Paul Walker’s $25 million fortune.
After Soteros agreed to treat her condition in an alcohol rehabilitation program, the mother of Paul Walker, 60-year-old Cheryl Ann Walker, agreed to allow Soteros to keep custody of Meadow.