XENIA — Television news has lost one of its greatest voices.
Doug Adair, a Xenia native and popular Cleveland and Columbus anchor, died April 29 in Pleasanton, Calif. He was 89. Adair was born in Xenia May 29, 1929 and after graduating from Northwestern University and serving in the Air Force during the Korean War, began his broadcast journalism career in Dayton.
He moved to WJW in Cleveland in 1958 — where he teamed with Joel Daly in 1964 to become to first two-man anchor team to report news from the same desk in that city — and then to WKYC in Cleveland in 1970 before joining WCMH in 1983, where he spent the rest of his career before retiring in 1994.
At the time of his retirement he was Ohio’s longest-serving TV news anchor.
Adair was frequently awarded for his newscasts and newswriting and he had the opportunity to interview many historical figures including Martin Luther King Jr., Robert Kennedy, sitting presidents and notorious criminals.
A member of the Ohio Broadcasters Hall of Fame and an Emmy Award winner, when Adair wasn’t delivering the news to the community, he was giving back to it.
He served on the boards of Goodwill Industries, the United Way, the Make-A-Wish Foundation in Columbus and the Council of the Churches of Cleveland.
“As a rookie in the news industry in the 90s, it was incredible to see how much Doug was respected by the central Ohio community,” said Steve Saunders, who spent several years at WCMH as a sports intern, producer and reporter. “One of the many things I noticed about Doug was how he used his platform to give back to Columbus through his charitable affiliations. He was and always will be a legend.”
Adair was presented with both the Faith of Freedom Award and the Catholic Church’s National Gabriel Award for his series, “The Crisis in Christianity.” After his “Clothes for Christmas” campaign for needy children, Adair received the Bishop’s Award of the Episcopal Church and was named Cleveland’s Outstanding Citizen by the Holy Name Society. In addition to being honored by Big Brothers of Greater Cleveland, he received the Outstanding Community Service Award from the joint Veteran’s Commission.
Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.