Tuesday, March 22, 2011

1000 Cranes for Sadako


1000 Cranes for Sadako
Photo & Text © 2011 Kim- Seattle Daily Photo. All rights reserved; no use, alteration, reproduction or republishing in any media.

Seattle's Peace Park was dedicated in 1990 and features this charming statue of Sadako Sasaki by Seattle sculptor Daryl Smith (who also cast the Jimi Hendrix sculpture on Broadway at Pine).

At age two, Sadako survived the atomic blast that destroyed her home in Hiroshima. She died at age 11, though--one of thousands of children who became ill with radiation related leukemia. Her classmates and children from all over Japan raised funds for a Children's Peace Memorial, dedicated in her honor on Children's Day in May of 1959. It stands in Hiroshima's Peace Park. Sadako completed folding 1000 origami cranes while in hospital in hopes of obtaining a wish for healing, and kept making more until shortly before her death two months later.

Dr. Floyd Schmoe, an amazingly accomplished and inspiring Seattlite who served as the first naturalist at Mount Rainier, helped establish and fund Seattle's Peace Park along with other members of University Friends Meeting (Society of Friends, Quaker). He had gone to Hiroshima right after WWII to build houses for the homeless, just one of his many activities in a lifelong dedication to peace and social justice. The UW professor  lived to be 105, and I hope you will take a moment to read about his truly remarkable and adventurous life here. It made my jaw drop in admiration.

11 comments:

Lynette said...

Wow. And I have enjoyed browsing your recent posts, too. The blog just gets better and better.

lizziviggi said...

Such a sad story, but a beautiful statue.

PPusa said...

I've visited Hiroshima three times and still find her story very touching.

Sailor said...

Beautiful picture with history.

henry said...

Very nice picture. i love it!

brattcat said...

what a beautiful post, kim. thank you.

Mina said...

I stopped and took a picture of this Monday on my way home from work, only she had a lot more on her at the time! Love it.

Anna said...

Beautiful contrast with the statue and the chains of cranes. Thanks for sharing this.

This past Remembrance Day (11 November), the grade 7 students in my class - and 4 others - folded 1000 cranes. We decorated the gym for the ceremony, and read the story of Sadako (which most of the students had never heard).

j@makehappyblog.com said...

I'm a huge fan of this sculpture. However, I'm always amazed, and grateful, that no one seems to disturb the cranes. It's nice to see that people respect that statue.

I recently posted a blog post about how much I like this statue over http://www.makehappyblog.com/?p=195

Steffe said...

A fine photo of the artwork, and a touching story about the young girl. I had a quick look at Floyd's achievements. He really had a long and interesting life. Will read it more carefully later.

Janet said...

The essay about Floyd's life was fascinating. Thank you so much for that link.