Captain John Valentine Adair, MC



John Valentine Adair was born on 13 February 1889 at Beechy Park, Rathvilly, County Carlow, son of land agent John Olphert Adair and his wife Elizabeth Frances Adair (nee Hall-Dare). He was educated at Harrow (1903-07).

On 28 November 1914 he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the North Irish Horse and seven months later promoted to Lieutenant.

Adair embarked for France on 1 May 1915 with D Squadron of the North Irish Horse. (The D Squadron diary includes a number of references to him.) He was gazetted as temporary captain from 16 November 1916, a promotion that was later confirmed, with seniority from 10 May 1916.

During 1918 Adair was attached to the 12th Lancers, and while serving with that regiment was awarded a Military Cross for 'conspicuous gallantry' in the last days of the war.

In the operations east of Landrecies from 5th/11th November, and particularly in the neighbourhood of Hestrud on 10th November, 1918, he carried out several personal reconnaissances of the enemy's position under very heavy fire, never failing under the most trying circumstances to obtain a definite and accurate report of the situation, and exposing himself fearlessly on every occasion to obtain it.

Adair remained in the military, serving in Iraq in the 1920s with the Rifle Brigade. He was one of a number 'brought to notice' in a report dated 16 June 1927 from Air Vice-Marshal Edmund Leonard Ellington, Air Officer commanding British forces in Iraq, for distinguished service in operations during April and May 1927. He was also awarded an Iraq Active Service Medal.


The photo above, from Harrow School Photographs Of Pupils & Masters 1869-1925, is sourced from the Find My Past website.