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Red Adair

Red AdairAKA Paul Neal Adair

Born: 18-Jun-1915
Birthplace: Houston, TX
Died: 7-Aug-2004
Location of death: Houston, TX
Cause of death: Natural Causes
Remains: Buried, Forest Park Cemetery, Houston, TX

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Business

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Extinguished oil well fires

Military service: US Army (139th Bomb Disposal Squadron, WWII)

Growing up during the Great Depression, Red Adair dropped out of high school to work and help his family make ends meet. He bounced through several jobs before joining the Army for WWII, where he found himself working in bomb disposal. Something about explosions appealed to this young man, and after the war he went to work for Myron Kinley, a world-famous freelance firefighter who specialized in the especially dangerous work of putting out oil well fires.

After more than a decade in Kinley's employ, Adair quit and started his own firefighting business, the Red Adair Company. A 1962 fire called the "Devil's Cigarette Lighter" made him famous. It had burned in the Sahara Desert for six months, consuming half-a-million cubic feet of gas every day. Adair and his crew extinguished that fire, and many more, including 117 lit by Saddam Hussein's retreating troops in the 1991 Gulf War. Adair sold the Red Adair Company in 1993, and retired to enjoy a quiet life as a freelance oil firefighting consultant.

Father: Charles Adair (blacksmith)
Mother: Mary Adair
Wife: Kemmie
Daughter: Robyn
Son: Jimmy

Official Website:

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