During last year's "Shark Week" on the Discovery Channel, actor Paul Walker assisted marine biologist Dr. Michael Domeier with the tagging of a pregnant great white shark. The special, "Spawn of Jaws," was but the latest ocean conservation series that the "Fast and Furious" star had participated in over the years; a realization of a dream he wanted to pursue outside of Hollywood.

“My intention was always to go back to marine bio,” he said in a May 2012 interview. “I’m still going to be a marine biologist. I’m waiting until I’m 40. It was 30 and then it pushed to 35, and now it’s 40, maybe 40 plus. But you know, that’s life. Life is balance and kinda trying to figure out what’s going on. But in the end of it all, I’ll figure out a way to have my cake and eat it too.”

Sadly, Walker passed away on November 30, 2013 after a high-speed crash - only weeks after production had started on a sequel to "Spawn of Jaws" called "Spawn of Jaws: The Birth."

"He did intend to be a part of it for the whole program," Dr. Domerier told EW. "So it was just a shock to me. Paul was much happier in his life than I’ve ever seen him before. Sometimes I see people on social media that can be very mean: “Oh, he’s only there for ratings.” The irony is that’s how I felt at first, too. But at the end, it wasn’t true. He was doing it because he loved it. And I appreciated his company."

Last night, before the premiere of "Spawn of Jaws," actor Dwayne Johnson, a co-star of Walker's in the "Fast and Furious" films, gave a short intro remembering his friend's passion for ocean conservation.

"Last year the ocean lost one of its biggest advocates," he says. "Paul Walker was not only an incredible actor, a very good friend, but a loving and devoted father to beautiful Meadow Rain."

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Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

'Shark Week' remembers Paul Walker with posthumous special
Late 'Fast and Furious' actor was an active champion of conservation efforts to protect sharks and other marine species.