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The Lone Soldier

Name: David Abraham
Hometown: Tucson, Ariz.
Grad Year: 2008
Major: Elementary Education
 
David had spent his entire life in Tucson getting involved in every Jewish aspect possible but it never was quite enough. Right after his graduation from the UA, David made the life decision to join the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF.) From there on David would be known as a lone soldier of Israel. Through his life long friendships with others who joined the IDF David and several others started a few programs helping those with similar interests.
 
HC: Tell our readers a little about what you do in the IDF.
David: While serving in the IDF, I was a soldier in the Armored Corps, starting off as a tank driver and later becoming a tank commander.As a commander I was responsible for training new soldiers fighting techniques within the tank as well as basic functions and management of the tank to make sure it stayed working properly.
 
HC: What gave you the idea to start this website? Who all founded this website and helped build it?
David: I am very lucky to be blessed with a group of friends here in Israel that possess passion, motivation, and a will to get things done, with almost all of them having left everything behind in the U.S. to come and voluntarily serve in the IDF and live in Israel.  Overall, there are eight of us who have moved here plus our Israeli “Godfather” Nimi.  We all moved within a five-year span. Some people have completed the army service while others are still in the process of doing so.
 In the IDF we are considered “lone soldiers” which are defined as soldiers who don’t have their parents living in Israel. Tragically, just over a year ago, one of those friends, Avi Schaefer was killed by a drunk driver near the Brown University campus.  In the Jewish tradition, when someone dies we say, “May their memory be for a blessing.”  Our whole group of friends decided to come together and honor Avi by creating many different projects that he was also passionate about and to carry on his legacy, with one of these projects being this website (another one is the Avi Schaefer Fund which his twin brother and family established –www.avischaeferfund.com). On the designing side, we were lucky enough to find a web designer who, like us, had just moved to Israel to voluntarily serve in the IDF. Putting all of our resources together, we created the most extensive and informational English website about the IDF out there.

HC: How long have you been working on this site?
David: We have been working on the site (IDFinfo – www.IDFinfo.co.ilsince the summer of 2010 and around September the work became a lot more concentrated. Throughout the fall, the site was worked on until we felt we had an abundant amount of content. It all culminated with an official “Launch Party” in Tel Aviv on January 20, 2011.  This isn’t to say that the site is finished– we are constantly updating and adding new things regularly.
 
We don’t belong to any specific organization, group, or business and, although we work closely with the army, we rely on ourselves and donations from the public to keep the site going strong and moving forward.  
 
We would appreciate any help possible in maintaining the website and this can be done at www.idfinfo.co.il/Donate.php. 

My name is Jessica Cooper and in the Fall I will be a Senior at the University of Arizona. I am majoring in journalism with a dual minor in history and judaic studies. My focus is in both print and online journalism. I have loved being a part of the Her Campus team for the last semester and am so excited to be the campus correspondant for the 2011-2012 year.
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