Home » Military Personnel » Navy Rescinds Bill Cosby’s Honorary Chief Petty Officer Title


Navy Rescinds Bill Cosby’s Honorary Chief Petty Officer Title

Bill Cosby in 2011 during the presentation of the title Honorary Chief Hospital Corpsman. The Navy pulled the title from Cosby on Dec. 4, 2014. US Navy Photo

Bill Cosby in 2011 during the presentation of the title Honorary Chief Hospital Corpsman. The Navy pulled the title from Cosby on Dec. 4, 2014. US Navy Photo

Following mounting allegations of sexual assault from several women, the U.S. Navy has rescinded a 2011 honorary title bestowed upon entertainer Bill Cosby, according to a Thursday statement.

“The Navy is taking this action because allegations against Mr. Cosby are very serious and are in conflict with the Navy’s core values of honor, courage and commitment,” read the statement from the Secretary of the Navy’s office.

Cosby, 77, was made an honorary Chief Petty Officer on Feb. 17, 2011 during a ceremony in Washington, D.C. at the U.S. Navy Memorial.

The title is administered by the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) and other recipients have included actor Gary Sinise and Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus.

During the 2011 ceremony, Mabus called Cosby, “a tireless advocate for social responsibility and education – and a constant friend to the Navy,” according to a cached version of a 2011 Navy news release.

Cosby joined the Navy in 1956 and served four years as a hospital corpsman with duty stations that included several hospitals on the East Coast and the amphibious warship USS Fort Mandan (LSD-21).

The following is the complete Dec. 4, 2014 statement from the Secretary of the Navy’s office.

ARLINGTON, Va. (NNS) — Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Michael Stevens today said the Navy is revoking Bill Cosby’s title of honorary Chief Petty Officer, originally presented in 2011. The Navy is taking this action because allegations against Mr. Cosby are very serious and are in conflict with the Navy’s core values of honor, courage and commitment.

Cosby enlisted in the Navy in 1956 and served for four years as a hospital corpsman before being honorably discharged in 1960 as a 3rd Class Petty Officer.

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Categories: Military Personnel, News & Analysis, U.S. Navy
Sam LaGrone

About Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone is the USNI Online Editor at the U.S. Naval Institute.
He was formerly the U.S. Maritime Correspondent for the Washington D.C. bureau of Jane’s Defence Weekly and Jane’s Navy International. In his role he covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.
Sam is a 2003 graduate of Virginia Military Institute.