Meet David: Jewish Firefighter of the Week

by Rachel Kriegsman / February 9, 2021

David Resnick is a combat photographer for the US Army. When he’s not snapping photos mid-air from an airplane, you can find him working as a volunteer firefighter saving lives (and probably cute kittens). His favorite day in DC is spent running on the Mall with his camera – fueled by a good bagel, of course. Meet this fun-loving, expert bucket lister who is excited to build community in DC.

Rachel: What brought you to DC and what made you stay?

David: I moved here for work at the end of the summer, but I specifically picked this area when I had a choice. I’ve always said DC is my favorite area and it’s true – I absolutely love it here and it never gets boring (and I get bored easily). I plan on staying in the DMV for good.

Rachel: I hear you’re a firefighter and a photographer. Tell me more about that and how you got into both. 

David: Yes! That’s correct. I’m a combat photographer for the U.S. Army, which is a fun job and I occasionally get to jump out of airplanes and helicopters, ride on speedboats, and go to interesting and awesome places. Every assignment is wildly different. At the moment, I am also a volunteer firefighter/EMT in Maryland. I’ve been doing that for 6 years. The adrenaline rush I get from that, helping people out on what sometimes is the worst day of their lives, and doing something you know I’ve always wanted to do is an amazing feeling.  Being a firefighter, to me, is the best job in the world. It’s not every day you get to live your childhood dream. 

Rachel: That’s awesome. Now tell us, what’s your dream day in the DMV from start to finish?

David: My dream day would be in warm weather. I’d wake up early ready to run about 12-15 miles, and see a beautiful sunrise on the National Mall. Then I’d grab breakfast from Call Your Mother in Georgetown, and see all the beautiful places around DC on the run (I run and photograph at the same time, usually it’s where I see the most beautiful things). After that, in a post-pandemic world, I’d spend the rest of the day outside, photographing the little things I see and eating all of the food. My favorites are Middle Eastern and Indian, but I haven’t found the best one yet. Ben’s Chili Bowl on U street near the Shaw area has been a regular fuel stop on my runs. I’d go to my favorite museum and fill my day with anything else that brings me joy and happiness. Then, I’d watch the most beautiful sunset with wisps of red, orange, yellow, and purple colors filling the sky and setting it on fire. After that, I’d go home, light candles that smell amazing, take a bath, and relax. There’s my one dream day out of a million other ones. That was a hard question! 

Rachel: Haha, so after all that running, what do you do to relax?

David: I run. Running is life for me. I think about everything when I run, I know I’m working hard, and there’s just something about it that makes me happier than almost anything. If I have a rough day at work, or anything is bothering me by the end of the week, I get out there and end up seeing the most beautiful things in the world around me, I stop and listen to the birds, and the tranquil sound of silence (I live next to an awesome 11 mile running path and at the end, it’s extremely silent, you can only hear nature and the occasional plane overhead). I also enjoy trying my hand at cooking. And, of course, going on walks with my camera in hand. 

Rachel: Do you have a Jewish role model who inspires you?

David: Yes, my grandfather. He continually inspires me. Throughout his life, he has been such a positive person and a leader in his community. He did not stop working until this year due to COVID…and he served in WWII. Needless to say, he has been active all of his life. 

Rachel: What’s at the top of your life bucket list?

David: I have always wanted to go to space. One day, maybe. I used to want to be President of the United States, which is a bold statement, but hey, why not? Truly, at the top of my life bucket list is to one day be a great husband and a father, everything else is just extra. 

Rachel: Where are some places you dream of traveling?

David: I am trying to do a 165-mile stage run around Mt. Kilimanjaro soon. I want to go out to Switzerland and spend a few weeks in the alps, go photograph wildlife and the natural world in the Amazon and Borneo, go back to Israel, Russia, and India to explore even more of all those countries. I’d also like to eat all of the good food in South Asia, spend time hiking in Patagonia, and see the milky way galaxy stretch across the whole sky in a far-off place. I want to go everywhere! 

Rachel: Complete this sentence – “When Jews of DC Gather…

David: They have fun and build a community to serve others. 


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