Celtics legend Bob Cousy awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom

Washington D.C.

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — In a ceremony Thursday at the White House, President Donald Trump presented a legendary basketball player with one of the nation’s highest civilian honors.

Hall of Famer Bob Cousy is considered one of the best playmakers in the history of the NBA, leading the league in assists for eight consecutive years and earning All-Star honors 13 times. The “Houdini of the Hardwood” grew up in New York but became a star in Boston, where he was an integral part of the Celtics dynasty that won six titles between 1957-1963.

“One of the all-time greats in the history of sports,” Trump said.

The president praised Cousy for his contributions on and off the court, crediting him with standing up for racial equality for his teammates.

“Voice against prejudice, racism, and bigotry,” Trump said.

Cousy also organized the National Basketball Players Association in 1954.

“Presidential Medal of Freedom allows me to reach a level of acceptance in our society I never once ever dreamed of,” Cousy said.

The 91-year-old reflected on his late wife and their 63 years of marriage, adding that this accomplishment allows him to “complete his life circle.”

“That’s why you shouldn’t invite old men to the White House. We get emotional,” he added.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, helped to arrange the honor for Cousy.

“It’s been a team effort to make this happen,” he said. “I’m just happy I could be a part of this.”

Cousy is the 34th athlete to receive the Medal of Freedom. The last was Tiger Woods back in May.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Top Videos

Lyft driver who picked up St. Pete man's dog located, puppy still missing

Thumbnail for the video titled "Lyft driver who picked up St. Pete man's dog located, puppy still missing"

Storm Team 8 Forecast: Warm Friday ahead of a cold front set to cool weekend temps

Thumbnail for the video titled "Storm Team 8 Forecast: Warm Friday ahead of a cold front set to cool weekend temps"

After tragedy, mother spreads message to "move over" for emergency vehicles

Thumbnail for the video titled "After tragedy, mother spreads message to "move over" for emergency vehicles"

Mayors focusing on local issues, not impeachment during DC conference

Thumbnail for the video titled "Mayors focusing on local issues, not impeachment during DC conference"

Full interview: Tampa Mayor Jane Castor in Washington for conference

Thumbnail for the video titled "Full interview: Tampa Mayor Jane Castor in Washington for conference"

Spring Hill couple face losing electricity over $3,086 'damage' claim

Thumbnail for the video titled "Spring Hill couple face losing electricity over $3,086 'damage' claim"

Manatee County man arrested for pointing laser at pilots, deputies say

Thumbnail for the video titled "Manatee County man arrested for pointing laser at pilots, deputies say"

Children & teens should be educated on human trafficking

Thumbnail for the video titled "Children & teens should be educated on human trafficking"

Thailand Veterans contend they are the scientific evidence VA claims it needs to grant benefits

Thumbnail for the video titled "Thailand Veterans contend they are the scientific evidence VA claims it needs to grant benefits"

Hundreds remember 5 women gunned down in bank a year after massacre

Thumbnail for the video titled "Hundreds remember 5 women gunned down in bank a year after massacre"

Sebring SunTrust Bank Reflection Park Dedication

Thumbnail for the video titled "Sebring SunTrust Bank Reflection Park Dedication"
More Local News

Latest Videos

More Local News

Trending Stories

get the app

News App

Weather App

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss