Sadako Sasaki

Sadako Sasaki

Hiroshima, Hiroshima, Japan
Death 25 Oct 1955 (aged 12)
Hiroshima, Hiroshima, Japan
Burial Hiroshima, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima, Japan
Memorial ID 63940136 · View Source
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Sadako Sasaki was born on January 7, 1943, and her short life was over on October 25, 1955. When she was only two years old, the atomic bomb was dropped by the United States on Japan. Sadako lived near Misasa Bridge in Hiroshima where the bomb was dropped on August 6, 1945. She was unfortunately a victim of the bomb, but at the age of two, this was not known.

Sadako was a bright, happy girl. She had lots of energy and her parents always had to tell her to sit still. Sadako Sasaki loved to run. She was very excited about being a part of the relay team at her school. This is why she did not tell anyone that she was suffering from dizzy spells when she was running. One time, however, she collapsed in front of teachers and her parents were called. She was hospitalized on February 21, 1955, where her family learned that she had leukemia as a result of the atomic bomb. It was predicted that she would live for no longer than one year. On August 3, 1955, Sadako's best friend, Chizuko Hamamota visited Sadako in the hospital and cut a golden piece of paper, creating a paper crane. Chizuko told her the story of the paper cranes and the Japanese belief that if you could fold 1,000 cranes, you could have a wish granted. Sadako then began trying to fold 1,000 cranes in order to get her wish to live. Unfortunately, she only made it to 644 before she died. Following her death, Sadako's friends finished the remainder of the 1,000 cranes and buried them with her.

While she was in the hospital, her condition continued to get worse. This was not only difficult for Sadako, but difficult for her parents and her siblings to see her dying. Her mom mader her a kimono with cherry blossoms on it so she could wear the traditional dress before she died. At this time, she was feeling a little better and so she was allowed to go home for a few days. Sadako befriended a boy named Kenji, an orphan, who also had leukemia like her, but he was in the later stages. He had been poisoned from the radiation while he was in his mother's womb. She tried to give Kenji hope with the golden crane story, but Kenji had faced reality and knew that his time was near. His mother had died already, and he knew how to read his blood charts and understood he was dying. While in the hospital, she learned of Kenji's death and was devastated. She knew that her time was coming soon too.

Around the middle of October, Sadako's leg turned purple and became swollen. She died on October 25, 1955. Her family was with her at the time of her passing.

After Sadako died, her friends and her schoolmates published letters so that they could raise the funds in order to build Sadako a memorial to her and the other children in Japan who had died due to the effects of the atom bomb. In 1958, the monument was complete. It was a statue of Sadako, and in her hands is a golden crane. This monument is located at Hiroshima Peace Memorial, otherwise known as Genbaku Dome. The plaque that is on the memorial states, "This is our cry. This is our prayer. Peace in the world." Additionally, there is a statue of Sadako Sasaki in the Seattle Peace Park. She had become a symbol of how war impacts innocent people, especially the danger of nuclear war. In Japan, she is a hero for many girls. People in Japan celebrate August 6 as the National Peace Day.

Sadako's story has become well known to many schoolchildren in other countries due to two different novels. The Day of the Bomb is written by the Austrian writer Karl Bruckner. Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes was first published in 1977 and is written by Eleanor Coerr. Robert Jungk also wrote Children of the Ashes, and his book did mention Sadako. Every year, there are thousands of paper cranes that are sent from children and adults to Hiroshim and Sadako Sasaki's memorial site. The cranes are symbolizing hope for a better future that is peaceful without suffering.

Today, the story of Sadako Sasaki continues to remind us of what can happen when we have war, especially when a nation chooses to use nuclear weapons. It allows us to personalize the decision and learn how it affected one individual person and that person's family. Now it has affected many people around the world who have had the opportunity to read the story of Sadako Sasaki and now see her as a brave little girl. So please, let's work towards peace.

(Article taken from internet)

  • Created by: Kathleen
  • Added: 8 Jan 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial 63940136
  • Kathleen
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Sadako Sasaki (7 Jan 1943–25 Oct 1955), Find a Grave Memorial no. 63940136, citing Hiroshima, Hiroshima, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima, Japan ; Maintained by Kathleen (contributor 46829214) .