Parents of Lanarkshire drinking victim say they ‘no longer want young lives to be lost’ in new appeal

The parents of a tragic Lanarkshire teenager who died after his drink was spiked have issued a fresh appeal to tackle the ‘horrendous’ crime.

Greg Mackie was just 18 when he was found dead at Edinburgh College following the 2017 incident.

He was discovered by a janitor in the campus bathroom.

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The tragedy devastated his family, but through their grief, parents Colin and Mandy Mackie, from Biggar, decided to launch a campaign to tackle alcohol abuse and they now run Spike Aware UK.

The couple began handing out leaflets at universities, colleges and pubs to raise awareness about drink doping, followed by informative beer coasters and protective lids.

Now, nearly five years after the loss of their son, Colin and Mandy are appealing for help with a nationwide doping investigation.

Greg had a passion for speedway riding and a bright future ahead of him.

The new questionnaire hopes to understand the experiences of people suspected of alcoholism and how it has affected them.

Colin and Mandy’s campaign has been backed by Central Scotland MSP Monica Lennon, who met them in the Scottish Parliament to discuss their work with Spike Aware UK.

Colin said: “We were delighted to meet Monica and are very grateful for her support.

“Beverage and needle use is a complex issue and a hidden crime. It can be difficult for some victims to come forward once they have been attacked, and data on the issues is needed.

“We hope our national survey will help highlight the complexity of drinking and needle use. We will use our survey data to conduct an awareness campaign and pressure authorities to be more active in dealing with cutting-edge issues.

Monica Lennon (center) with Greg Mackie’s parents Mandy and Colin

“Our son Greg suffered a spike and lost his life, we don’t want any more young lives to be lost to this horrific crime.”

Ms Lennon added: “It was a pleasure to meet Colin and Mandy to find out more about their work at the helm of Spike Aware UK.

“From the saddest of tragedies of the loss of their beloved son, Greg, they have launched a truly inspiring and much needed campaign.

“Greg was a talented young man with a passion for circuit driving and a bright future ahead of him.

“The consumption of drinks and needles is a despicable act which, unfortunately, is becoming more and more widespread.

“With Spike Aware UK, Colin and Mandy are doing a fantastic job of raising awareness and I encourage as many people as possible to complete the survey.”

The couple’s survey can be completed here.

Find out more about Spike Aware UK on their website.

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