An Iowa principal who displayed heroism during a recent mass shooting at Perry High School has succumbed to injuries sustained in the attack, as confirmed by his wife. The tragic incident occurred on January 4 when a 17-year-old student opened fire at the school near Des Moines. Initially leaving one sixth-grade student dead and seven others injured, including Principal Dan Marburger, the aftermath of the shooting has now claimed Marburger’s life.
Elizabeth Marburger, Dan’s wife, shared the sad news on a GoFundMe campaign that was set up when he was still in the hospital. “At approximately 8:00 am, January 14, Dan lost his battle. He fought hard and gave us 10 days that we will treasure forever.”
The shooting, which marked the second incident on a school property in the US within the early days of 2024, drew attention to Marburger’s heroic actions. Shot multiple times, Marburger attempted to save students by engaging with and distracting the shooter during the attack. His daughter, Claire Marburger, shared on social media shortly after the incident, “It is absolutely zero surprise to hear he tried to approach and talk Dylan down and distract him long enough for some students to get out of the cafeteria.”
Acknowledging Marburger’s selfless and courageous actions, the Iowa Department of Public Safety stated that he “acted selflessly and placed himself in harm’s way in an apparent effort to protect his students.” In honor of his sacrifice, Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff.
Dan Marburger, who had worked at schools in Perry, Iowa, for at least 25 years, became a symbol of bravery and dedication in the face of adversity. Despite the swift response of officers to the shooting, Marburger’s injuries proved fatal. The Perry Middle School student killed in the attack was identified as 11-year-old Ahmir Jolliff, who suffered three gunshot wounds during the tragic incident.