Class 44-H-SE on September 8, 1944, 2nd Lt. from Philadelphia (0838027)
Captain William Cousins was a charter member of the Greater Philadelphia of Tuskegee Airmen and a past president
The Congressional Medal of Honor was awarded to Williams Cousins and his fellow Tuskegee Airmen by President George W. Bush in the White House in 2007 and he was very proud to wear it
William M. Cousins, a Tuskegee Airman fighter pilot during WW2 and U.S. Housing and Urban Development employee, died on Thursday, May 15, 2014. He was 90. Cousins was born on July 21, 1923, to Ruth and Samuel Cousins in Goochland, Va. He moved to Philadelphia at the age of six. Cousins was educated in the School District of Philadelphia, and he graduated from Central High School.
Cousins was drafted into the U.S. Army and sent to Biloxi, Miss., then to Tuskegee, Ala., where he became one of the Tuskegee fighter pilots. He graduated from the 44-H class as a second lieutenant. While at Tuskegee, Cousins trained in a P-40, a single engine combat plane and a P-47.
He flew to Casablanca in a C-54, then on to Naples and inland to Ramatelli. He was in the 332nd fighter group and the 100th fighter squadron. He flew in 12 missions while in Italy.
After the war, Cousins attended Temple University. After graduating from Temple, he worked for the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations. After the fair housing law passed, Cousins worked in Harrisburg for the state commission. He then returned to Philadelphia to work for the U.S. Housing and Urban Development for the remainder of his career.
He married Laura Cheatham in 1948. Two children were born to their union.
His wife preceded him in death.
He is survived by his children Philip and Leslie; granddaughter Jennifer Cousins Hasler; great-granddaughter Evelyn Hasler; sister Dorothy Cousins; friend Wiladine Bain and other relatives and friends.