This Is Your Life, Hanna Kohner ...the story of a Holocaust Survivor ! Tissues Please!
In a video uploaded to the Holocaust Visual Archive’s YouTube channel, one of the most emotional reality tv episodes was captured detailing the life of a Holocaust survivor who had only been liberated a few short years prior.
In 1953 32-year-old Hanna Bloch-Kohner was the first non-celebrity to appear on Ralph Edwards’s This Is Your Life, the reality series that aired on NBC radio and television from 1948 to 1961.
Bloch-Kohner, born in Czechoslovakia, was arrested in 1943 and eventually sent to Auschwitz. Edwards left out one shocking detail that Bloch-Kohner would reveal in later interviews: she was pregnant when she was deported, and to survive, she had a secret abortion. She listens as he describes her separation from her brother Gottfried, who had moved to Israel after the war and who later steps out from behind the curtain, and the death of her first husband in the gas chambers.
Bloch-Kohner’s face is incredibly expressive as she exudes delight at seeing loved ones she has not seen in years, and of incredible sorrow. When they arrive at the part of the story when she discovers that her brother is still alive, she interrupts Edwards because she needs to tell the rest of it herself.