By MEGHAN McCOY, firstname.lastname@example.org
Cape Coral Kiwanis Club president-elect Club Don Czech built this 1/72 scale WWII USS Cobia SS245 model submarine for the Cape Coral VFW.
A WWII USS Cobia SS245 submarine model was donated to the Veterans of Foreign Wars by a Kiwanis Club member earlier this month to fill a vacant display case located in their dining room. Don Czech, president-elect of the Cape Coral Kiwanis Club said his club meets in the VFW dinning room once a week and one morning he spotted a display case that was placed in a corner that was beat up and looked like it was going to be thrown away. “The display case was sitting in a corner unused, so I asked them if I could borrow it,” he said, which they agreed to. The display case was then brought back to Czech’s home where he cleaned the case with one of his friends. After both of them discussed what they could do with the case, they both decided they should build a military model of a submarine to place inside as a surprise for the VFW, due to both of them having experience in building models. “The submarine is a 1/72nd scale rendition of the USS Cobia SS245, which served in the later part of WWII,” Czech said, adding that all of the specs are on the plaques in the case. “I felt that the Submarine would fit the case just right so then I got the sub, built it and redid the base so that it was presentable,” he said. “I mounted the sub in it and I got a few donations from a place that does military insignias, Crown Trophy in Cape Coral to make the signs in the case and a former Navy Sea Bee made the wooden blocks that the sub sits on.” He said he began building the submarine in May and completed it at the end of October, which he said was done in about 100 to 150 hours. The Cape Coral VFW received the submarine on Nov. 14. Czech said the VFW post members were overwhelmed when they received the donation. He explained that the reception he received from the guys was very, very good. Czech said he is a retired Navy guy that wanted to do a great thing to “show a little respect for these guys who did service for us.” He said that he is already receiving phone calls from other VFW members to have him build a military model for them. The sub is available for viewing at the VFW in Cape Coral.