Roscoe Brown

Roscoe Conkling Brown Jr. (March 9, 1922 – July 2, 2016) was one of the Tuskegee Airmen and a squadron commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron of the 332nd Fighter Group. He was appointed to this position in June 1945, which was after V-E Day (May 8, 1945). During combat, he served as a flight leader and operations officer only. He graduated from the Tuskegee Flight School on March 12, 1944 as member of class 44-C-SE[1] and served in the U.S. Army Air Forces in Europe during World War II. During this period, Captain Brown shot down an advanced German Me 262 jet fighter and a FW-190 fighter (he is credited as the first pilot to shoot down a jet).[2][3] He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.[4]

Roscoe Brown
Brown speaks at the dedication of the Tuskegee Airmen Bus Depot of MTA Regional Bus.
Born(1922-03-09)March 9, 1922
Washington, D.C.
DiedJuly 2, 2016(2016-07-02) (aged 94)
Norwood, New York
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchArmy Air Corps
Unit100th Fighter Squadron of the 332nd Fighter Group
ConflictWorld War II
AwardsDistinguished Flying Cross

Brown was born in Washington, D.C. in 1922.[5][6] His father, Roscoe C. Brown Sr. (1884–1963), was a dentist and an official in the United States Public Health Service[7] who was born as George Brown and had changed his name to honor Roscoe Conkling, a strong supporter of the rights of African Americans during Reconstruction. His mother was the former Vivian Berry, a teacher.[5]

Prior to his wartime service, he graduated from Springfield College, Springfield, Massachusetts, where he was valedictorian of the Class of 1943.[8]

After the war, Captain Brown resumed his education. His doctoral dissertation was on exercise physiology[9] and he became a professor at New York University and directed their Institute of Afro-American Affairs. He was President of Bronx Community College from 1977 to 1993 and then director for the Center for Education Policy at the City University of New York.[5] In 1992, Brown received an honorary doctor of humanics degree from his alma mater, Springfield College.

On March 29, 2007, Brown attended a ceremony in the U.S. Capitol rotunda, where he and the other Tuskegee Airmen collectively, not individually, were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in recognition of their service.[10]

He was also a member and past president of the 100 Black Men of America New York Chapter.[11] and professor of Urban Education at the CUNY Graduate Center. Brown died on July 2, 2016 at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, N.Y. at the age of 94.[5][12][13] He had resided in Riverdale in his latter years.[14]


  1. ^ Tuskegee University's Tuskegee Airmen Pilot Listing. Retrieved 2012-01-21 Archived 2013-12-03 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Roscoe C. Brown, Jr. - Military Biography
  3. ^ Roscoe Brown, Jr. Biography
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b c d Roberts, Sam (July 7, 2016). "Roscoe C. Brown, Jr., 94, Tuskegee Airman and Political Confidant". New York Times. p. A17. Retrieved 7 July 2016.
  6. ^ "Roscoe C. Brown". Retrieved 6 November 2013.
  7. ^ The History Makers Biography of Captain Brown
  8. ^ Interview: Dr Roscoe Brown, Tuskegee Airman and Squadron Commander
  9. ^ Pilot and edicator Roscoe C Brown Keystone College
  10. ^ "WWII black pilots, Tuskegee Airmen, get top civilian honor" William Douglas. McClatchy Newspapers, March 30, 2007.
  11. ^ Roscoe C Brown, Jr Facebook
  12. ^ "Longtime NYC educator, WWII hero, Roscoe Brown dead at 94". Retrieved 2016-07-05.
  13. ^ World War II Hero Dr. Roscoe C. Brown Dies at 94 Archived 2016-07-05 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ "Sixty years later, Congress honors Tuskegee Airmen" William Douglas. McClatchy Newspapers, March 15, 2007.

External linksEdit

Academic offices
Preceded by
Morton Rosenstock
President of
Bronx Community College

1977 — 1993
Succeeded by
Leo A. Corbie