August 09, 2005

Horse 384 - 1000 Paper Cranes

Sadako Sasaki was a Japanese girl who lived near Misasa Bridge in Hiroshima, Japan. She was only two years old when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945. At the moment of explosion she was at her home, less than 2 miles from ground zero.

As she grew up, Sadako was a strong, courageous and athletic girl. In 1954, at age eleven, while practicing for a big race, she became dizzy and fell to the ground. Sadako was diagnosed with leukemia, which already in Japan had become known as the the "atom bomb disease".

Sadako's best friend told her of an old Japanese legend which said that anyone who folds a thousand origami paper cranes would be granted a wish. Sadako hoped that the gods would grant her a wish to get well so that she could run again. She spent fourteen months in the hospital, and she folded over 1,300 paper cranes before dying at the age of twelve. She folded the cranes out of her medicine bottle wrappers and any other paper she could find in hopes of getting better, to no avail...

In Hiroshima there stands a memorial in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum depicting Sadako and one of the cranes she had folded. Also in the Peace Park is the 'Flame of Peace' that burns as long as Nuclear Weapons exist, I hope that one day we finally see it extinguished.


Ole Blue The Heretic said...

I was listening to the radio this morning and the news person stated how Truman probably would not have dropped the bomb had he known what we know now.

It is hard to say, but now we see what it has done, hopefully no one will ever use nuclear weapons again

Anonymous said...

I read the story of this girl when I was in the 4rth grade. It is very moving.