Crash claims life of Sequoyah’s Cabin, CHC tour guide

BY D. SEAN ROWLEY
Senior Reporter
05/09/2019 12:00 PM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Zach Adair, 38, worked at Sequoyah’s Cabin and the Cherokee Heritage Center. He died on April 26 in a car crash. COURTESY
SALLISAW – Funeral services for Zachary “Blak” Adair, of Sallisaw, were held on May 1 at Cave Springs High School in Stilwell. Interment followed at Tahlequah City Cemetery.

Adair, 38, was born on June 28, 1980, and died on April 26 in a single-vehicle crash in Adair County.

Adair was a graduate of Cave Springs High School and later earned a bachelor’s degree from Northeastern State University. He was employed by the Cherokee Nation as a caretaker at Sequoyah’s Cabin. He had also worked as a Cherokee Fire Dancer, which is a firefighter, and provided tours for the Cherokee Heritage Center in Park Hill.

“Zach mainly worked as our tour guide and cashier,” Josh Collins, of Sequoyah’s Cabin, said. “He was definitely a people person for sure – a social butterfly and the sound of this place. He will be missed. We opened up together down here and we started here together ever since the cabin opened with (the Cherokee Nation).”

“He was not just a coworker to me, he was family,” said Ruby Swake, also of Sequoyah’s Cabin. “We were close. We talked daily, even on our days off. If he didn’t know you, you were going to know him by the time you left this place. We will try to fill his footprints here. We all help each other no matter what.”

Adair’s survivors include his wife Audrey Adair, and two children, Steeler and Kaelyn, of the home; a daughter, Trinity Adair, and a son, King Adair, both of Lincoln, Arkansas; parents Donald and Joanne Adair, of Tahlequah, and Linda “Lynn” and Edwin McCulley, of Sallisaw; siblings Michelle “Missy” Adair, of Park Hill, Ryan Adair, of Sallisaw, Stone Girty and wife Jennifer, of Vian, and Chad Adair, of Tahlequah; his grandmothers Akie Gourd and Katie Adair, of Tahlequah; nieces and nephews Hope, Darian and Kristen Adair, Destin and Angel Adair, River and Eagle Adair, Ethan, Elijah, Elliott, Eden, Ean and Em Girty, Jerriah Ketcher, Kobe Doublehead, Jerrika Bunch and Jerrae Sanders; and aunt Brenda Daniels and uncles Elvin “Bossie” Drywater, Phillip “Bodie” Drywater and Johnny Adair, all of Tahlequah. His adopted family in Canada includes his brother David “Weege” Oakes, Katsianoron “Nolo” Thompson and Erin Barnes.

He was preceded in death by his brother Kerry Adair, grandfathers John B. Adair, Pumpkin Drywater and J.B. Bird, aunt Mary Duvall and uncle Mack Vann.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol stated the crash occurred at about 1:02 a.m. on Star Killer/940 Road, 2 miles west of State Highway 49, approximately 11.5 miles south of Stilwell.

Adair was driving a 1995 GMC 1500 westbound on 940 Road when he departed the roadway to the right, striking a tree before making a one-quarter overturn, coming to a rest on the driver side. Adair was pinned for approximately 43 minutes, according to the accident report. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The report stated the cause of the collision was under investigation. Seatbelts were not in use at the time of the crash.
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