Cummings, an Army Air Corps Major at war's end, was one of 103 black officers arrested at Freeman Field in Seymour, Indiana in 1945 for protesting segregation at the Officer's Club there.
In 1947 Cummings and his brother, Joseph, started a masonry company. He retired in the 1980s, but remained active as an alumnus of the Tuskegee flight school, attending ceremonies and receiving honors in Washington D. C. and in Tuskegee.
Cummings died during pulmonary surgery in a Columbus, Ohio hospital. He was preceded in death by his wife, Mildred, and was survived by two daughters and two granddaughters. He is interred at Union Cemetery in Columbus, Ohio.
- "Tuskegee Airman, 90, dies during surgery." (July 5, 2009) Associated Press
- "Herndon M. Cummings "Don" obituary (July 6, 2009) Columbus Dispatch