New version of 'Runaway Train' music video helps find missing teens

It’s been a quarter of a century since “Runaway Train” by Soul Asylum came out.

The song was a smash hit for the band from Minneapolis, and the video became a fixture on MTV. Now, there’s a version of both.

The original video shined a spotlight on the issue of missing and trafficked children and the new version renews the same call to help bring some of them back home.

When “Runaway Train” was released in the early 1990s, it became a runaway hit for Soul Asylum.

Now, the iconic song is getting an update in time for its 25th Anniversary.

“It doesn’t seem like 25 years,” said Soul Asylum lead singer Dave Pirner. “I’m excited that the song has some sort of relevance is important to me.”

In the classic music video, Pirner and the band teamed up with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to show pictures of three dozen actual runaways from across the country.

The video was in constant rotation on MTV and the Center says it led to locating 21 of the kids featured in the clip.

“Now, when I hear about it, it makes me very emotional,” said Pirner. “They didn’t have Amber Alerts back then and stuff. It feels good to be a part of something that was helpful and effective.”

Now, the Center has released a remake called “Runaway Train 25” featuring contemporary singers Jamie N. Commons, Skylar Gray and Gallant.

Like the original, the new video features pictures of current missing children, but if viewers watch it on the Center’s website, it shows runaway teens from the viewers’ area, including six in Minnesota.

"When people go missing somebody knows something and the more that you can get people's faces and information in front of larger amounts of people, the better off we'll be and the greater chance we’ll have of bringing people home,” said Abbey Lowenstein, of the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center.

After a quarter century, Pirner is grateful “Runaway Train” could help another batch of missing teens get their lives back on track.

"If anything it makes it seem more timeless and if there is anything I try to accomplish as a songwriter is to create something that is timeless,” he said.

The Jacob Wetterling Resource Center says there are 100 missing children cases in Minnesota right now.

Part of the proceeds from the sale of “Runaway Train 25” will go to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.