Captain Adair was born in Tyler, Texas, on 17 May 1901, son of Mrs. Josephine (Crutchfield) Adair and the late Mr. Noah Adair. He attended San Bernardino, California, High School before entering the United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, from California on 20 June 1920. While a Midshipman he was a member of the track and wrestling teams. Graduated and commissioned Ensign on 5 June 1924, he progressively advanced to the rank of Captain to date from 10 November 1945.
After graduation from the Naval Academy in 1924, Captain Adair had successive duty at sea aboard USS Arizona and USS Arctic and in February 1926 was ordered to the Naval Air Station, Pensacola Florida, for flight training. He was designated Naval Aviator on 18 December 1926, and thereafter had consecutive duty with Patrol Squadron 2, based on USS Langley, and Torpedo Squadron 5, attached to USS Jason, operating with Aircraft Squadrons, Asiatic Fleet. During the latter assignment in 1928 he piloted a plane employed in making aerial photographs over Nanking, China.
Returning to the United States in July 1930, Captain Adair had a tour of duty at the Naval Air Station, San Diego, California, from September of that year until July 1933, after which he served for two years with Scouting Squadron 2, based on the Saratoga . He was transferred in June 1935 to Observation Squadron 1, attached to USS Texas, and detached in May 1936, he served for two years at the Fleet Air Base, Coco Solo, Canal Zone. While in that duty he flew planes for aerial photographic mapping over Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Venezuela.
In June 1938 he joined Scouting Squadron 2 attached to USS Lexington and in June 1940 was transferred to duty in that carrier. He then reported to the Naval Air Station, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and in August 1941 assumed command of that station. Ordered relieved of that command, he reported in September 1943 for duty as Executive Officer of the Naval Air Station, Norfolk, Virginia, and served us such until June 1945.
Captain Adair commanded the Naval Operating Base, Dutch Harbor, Alaska, from June 1945 until October 1946, and during that period was also in command of the Naval Air Station there. He then served for a year as Commanding Officer of USS Greenwich Bay (AVP 41) and on 9 September 1947, was ordered to duty us Inspector-Instructor of Naval Reserve, Santa Barbara, California.
Captain Adair is entitled to the American Defense Service Medal, the American Area Campaign Medal, the Asiatic Pacific Area Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.
Captain Adair has written a number of articles for magazines including Coronet, Aviation, Popular Photography and the US Naval Institute, and has published cartoons in various commercial magazines.