Police and NHS bosses have issued a pills warning after fears a young Kirkintilloch dad died on Saturday from an ecstasy-type drug.
Amateur boxer Richie Carrigan (24) was rushed to Glasgow Royal Infirmary around 3.25pm after taking ill at a house in Waterloo Close.
The father-of-two died a short time later.
A 16-year-old boy and a 23-year-old man were also taken to hospital amid fears they took the same drug. Their condition was described on Monday as “serious”.
In a statement released on Monday, Richie’s devastated family said: “He was a loving son, brother, boyfriend and father.
“He was a keen member of Kirkintilloch Boxing Club and was Scottish Junior Champion. He will be sadly missed.”
Police issued a warning about clear capsules containing white powder and pink tablets after the young man’s death.
And Dr Emilia Crighton of NHS Greater Glasgow said people taking unregulated recreational drugs were playing “Russian roulette with their lives”.
Detective Inspector Greig Wilkie said on Monday: “Enquiries are ongoing to establish the circumstances surrounding the men taking ill. A post mortem will take place in due course and a report sent to the procurator fiscal.
“One line of enquiry being pursued by officers is that a type of ecstasy may have been involved.
“However, this has still to be confirmed. With regard to the type of ecstasy – it has no markers on it and is described as either clear capsules containing white powder or in tablet form which are pink in colour. “
“Whether or not drugs have been involved in this case, I must take the opportunity to stress just how dangerous they are.
“People need to understand the devastating effect they can have so my advice is, don’t risk it and report any information to the police.”
Tribute was paid to Richie by Kirkintilloch Boxing Club coach James Carr.
He said Richie trained at Kirkintilloch Boxing Club up until a few years ago when he switched to Mixed Martial Arts.
James said: “We still kept in touch. Richie was a good, good man. He was a former Scottish Amateur Lightweight Boxing Champion.
“He was incredibly fit and forever helping with the youngsters at the club. He was very committed. Whatever happened here is devastating and an absolute shock to everyone.”
The proud dad’s baby daughter was the winner of the Cute Kids contest in the Kirkintilloch Herald in November 2013, when she was just seven-months-old.
Friends have paid tribute to him on Twitter, with one saying he was “an amazing man and an inspiration”.
Health officials and medical staff are working closely with police in their inquiry
Dr Crighton, who is a consultant in public health medicine, said: “People taking unregulated recreational drugs are playing Russian roulette with their lives. No one knows exactly what these drugs contain or how strong they are. I urge anyone who feels unwell after taking recreational drugs to seek early treatment.”