A thousand papercranes

A thousand papercranes

In Japan it is believed that anyone who folds a thousand paper cranes will be granted a wish.

Sadako Sasami was two years old when the nuclear bomb was dropped over Hiroshima. Ten years later she fell ill with leukemia and had to spend long periods of time in the hospital.
As a sign of her will to live she started to fold paper cranes out of whatever paper she could find. According to a children’s book written about her, she first folded a thousand cranes for her best friend. The friend survived. When she started to fold cranes to overcome her own disease, she only managed to fold 644.

Sadako’s story touched people’s hearts. They started to send paper cranes and money to Hiroshima. In 1958 a monument was erected in Sadako’s memory. The statue depicting Sadako with a crane in her outstretched arms stands in the peace park in Hiroshima, close to where the bomb was dropped. A small bell close by has the inscription “A thousand papercranes” and on the other side “Peace in heaven and on earth”.

All the children of the world deserve a thousand paper cranes, but above all do the children of Fukushima.

Angela Oker-Blom