William M. Cousins
July 21, 1923 – May 15, 2014
Class: 44-H-SE
Graduation date: September 8, 1944
Service # 0838027

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, AL., 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.

Captain William Cousins was a charter member of the Greater Philadelphia of Tuskegee Airmen and a past president.

Source: Greater Philadelphia of Tuskegee Airmen


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