The heartbroken family of a 20-year-old man warned of the dangers of drugs yesterday after he collapsed and died at a party while celebrating his birthday.
Tragic Samuel Thornton fell ill at 5am after taking an ”illegal substance” at a one-off event where he and his friends had gone to mark the milestone on Saturday.
He collapsed and was taken to hospital but doctors were unable to save him and he was pronounced dead at around 10am the following day.
Samuel, a mechanic, was with nine of his friends at the Pop Clique dance music night held on an industrial estate near his home in Falmouth, Cornwall.
It is understood he took the drug at the party – held in a disused warehouse – and collapsed at around 5am on Sunday.
His heartbroken family paid tribute to his ”happy go lucky spirit and sense of fun and adventure” and warned other youngsters against taking drugs.
In a statement, they said: ”On Saturday, Sam was celebrating his 20th birthday and attended a party where it seems he took an illegal substance which ultimately took his life.
”He was by no means a junkie or drug addict but was always out for a thrill or the next adrenaline rush which probably led to him taking whatever it was he took.
”We would like to urge other youngsters who take or are tempted to take drugs that drugs can, and do kill, we have seen this first hand and wouldn’t want to wish what we are going through on anyone.
”All of Sam’s family and friends are devastated at what has happened but are taking some comfort from the fact that although his life was tragically short, he lived it to the fullest.
”Everyday was full of excitement for Sam, whether he was working on his car which was his pride and joy, at work where his sense of humour and cheeky smile will be missed by the staff and customers alike, or just at home with his loving friends and family.”
A police spokesman said Samuel’s death was being treated as ”unexplained” and a post mortem was due to be carried out.
He added: ”Officers are investigating the circumstances surrounding his death and will be tracing and speaking to friends and acquaintances who spent time with him that evening to piece together what happened.”