January 30 – April 30
Sadako’s Story and Students for peace
“I shall write peace upon your wings, and you shall fly around the world so that children will no longer have to die this way.”
– Sadako Sasaki
This display was inspired by Sadako’s story. Sadako Sasaki, a girl who was born in Japan in 1943, was two years old when America dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. Sadako was exposed to deadly radiation, but she managed to live an active and healthy childhood. She excelled in sports until age 11, when she became very sick and was diagnosed with leukemia (the “atom bomb” disease).
Faced with the realization that this disease meant death, Sadako courageously turned to an old Japanese legend that a person’s greatest wish would be granted if he or she folded 1,000 paper cranes. Sadako desperately wanted to recover, but she folded the cranes for an even greater purpose: her wish was for world peace. She believed that if she could fold 1,000 cranes before her death, the gods would grant her wish of peace and no one else would have to die.
Sadako never reached her goal. She folded cranes until the day of her death on October 25, 1955. She was 12 years old. Her friends completed her goal of 1,000 cranes for her funeral.
Since Sadako’s premature death, cranes have been seen as a symbol of peace around the world. Thousands of cranes have been folded in her memory, keeping alive her dream and her vision of a world where peace will prevail.
Students for Peace is a group of Western Oregon University students who are dedicated to promoting world peace, non-violence, and tolerance. We support peaceful resolutions to problems and believe in educating, not retaliating.
This is 1,000 crane display represents Students for Peace’s contribution to the endless struggle for world peace in Sadako’s memory.
-Dori and Katie Hodgkin
LOCATION: 1st Floor Main Lobby
Curators: Katie and Dori Hodgkin