This week’s music video is Runaway Train by Soul Asylum.
I’m sure people remember this video well as it showed photos of actual missing teenagers (mostly runaways). I remember being quite fascinated (and upset) by this video at the time & I often wondered if any of the kids featured in the video had been found.
I hadn’t thought of the video in years until I started doing this Music Video Friday thing. After thinking of doing this one, it suddenly occurred to me that I’d now be able to easily Google it & find out if it really helped to find any of the missing teens. Not all the stories have happy endings, unfortunately, but the video’s director (Tony Kaye) claims that 26 of those featured were found. I think that’s fantastic.
Wikipedia has the most information that I could find (link HERE):
“There were three original versions of the video in the United States, totaling 36 missing children shown. Depending on what country the video was being broadcast, they would show children from that area who are missing. The version shown in Australia showed a number of young backpacking tourists whose families were looking for them. Several of them turned out to be victims of Ivan Milat, the Backpacker Murderer.
The UK version of the video featured Vicky Hamilton and Dinah McNicol, who each went missing in 1991. Their remains were found in 2007 at a house in Margate. Peter Tobin has since been convicted of both murders.
Curtis Huntzinger, who was featured in the US video, was located deceased in 2008. His convicted killer, Stephen Daniel Hash, is currently serving a sentence of 11 years for manslaughter in Folsom State Prison.
The last image in all three U.S. versions of the song is Thomas Dean Gibson, who disappeared from Glendale, Oregon, in 1991 at the age of 2. He is still missing as of 2014, and age-progressed photos of him at age 19 and age 21 were released in 2009 and 2012, respectively, by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. His father, Larry Gibson, a former deputy sheriff, was convicted of second degree manslaughter for accidentally shooting his son to death when he shot at a stray cat in his front yard even though no remains were ever found. He steadfastly denies killing his son and has worked on finding him since being released from prison in 1996.”
I also read in a couple of articles that the band would sometimes be approached by people who had been in the video & they weren’t all happy at having been found, as some had run away from bad situations at home. However, despite the sad stories (which are the only ones that are focused on in what I’ve been able to find), there were still 26 teenagers who were reunited with their families & I think the director and the band did the video with the right intentions. It’s great that a music video was used for a good cause instead of once again just featuring scantily clad women.
(But man I hate 90’s music like this, which I already had a rant about when I posted Blind Melon’s No Rain…). 😉 But I always appreciate a good video, whether or not I like the song.
Here’s one version of the video: