"The cranes were inspired by the story of “Sadako and the 1,000 Cranes,” about a young Japanese girl with leukemia caused by the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in 1945. Sadako had heard a legend that anyone who folded a thousand paper cranes would be granted a wish. She began folding with the wish that the gods would make her well again."

(attribution: Laura Myers of the Missourian)