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Twins reunite after watching CNN film 'Three Identical Strangers'

By Ben Tinker

Published January 24, 2019

Credit: Allison Kanter

When Michele Mordkoff and Allison Kanter (pictured here) were 5 months old, they were each adopted by loving families in the New York City area, two days apart. The infants, of course, didn't know it -- and their families weren't informed -- but the girls were twins. It was mid-October 1964, and the two wouldn't see each other again for more than 50 years.

Credit: Allison Kanter

Mordkoff (pictured here) had always wondered about her identity, and her curiosity finally got the best of her last summer after she watched CNN Films' "Three Identical Strangers."

After watching the documentary, Mordkoff remembers thinking, "I need to spit in a cup and find out what my history is."

Credit: Michelle Mordkoff

Just a few weeks later, Mordkoff's (pictured here) Ancestry.com results revealed an "immediate family member" she did not know she had. The account of her match was managed by a young man in California, so Mordkoff (who lives in New Jersey) decided to send him a message.

Credit: Michelle Mordkoff

"I kept it really low-key. I said, 'Hi, I'm adopted, and you matched with me, as well as your mom. Please write me back.' I was tempted to say more, but I didn't think it was right."

Michelle Mordkoff

Credit: CNN

Kanter (pictured here) remembers her son texting her and saying, "Mom, there's someone [contacting] me that said they're related to you … and you need to look at your birth certificate number right away and tell me what it is."

Credit: Allison Kanter

"I was just shocked. I thought someone had assumed my identity. I didn't know what was happening, and then I read him the numbers -- the last four numbers -- and he said, 'Mom ... she's your twin sister.' "

Allison Kanter

Credit: CNN

After 54 years apart, completely unaware each other existed, Mordkoff and Kanter reunited face to face in New York City in August.

Credit: NEON/family photo

"I was just hoping that she had a similar life to me, that we grew up in a very similar way, that it would be easy to get to know each other and that there wouldn't be any animosity [about] how we were raised."

Allison Kanter

Credit: Allison Kanter

While both women say they feel robbed of their childhoods together, they have come to be at peace with uncovering this life-altering revelation at this stage in their lives. They are both in long-term relationships, each with grown children.

Credit: Allison Kanter

"We missed out on what sisters should've had together, but that being said, we have each other now for future times together and happy occasions and [to] support each other."

Michelle Mordkoff

Credit: Allison Kanter