Dan Marburger, the heroic Perry, Iowa high school principal who was shot while trying to protect students from a mass shooter, has died from his injuries, his family confirmed.
Elizabeth Marburger posted the update on the family’s GoFundMe page Sunday. She said the beloved principal died at 8 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 14, 10 days after he was shot.
"He fought hard and gave us 10 days that we will treasure forever," Elizabeth Marburger said in the update.
Dan Marburger and six others, including two staff members and four teenage students, were injured in the Jan. 4 shooting that killed 11-year-old Ahmir Jolliff, a sixth-grader. Dylan Butler, the 17-year-old student who opened fire, also died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot.
Police respond to a school shooting at the Perry Middle School and High School complex on January 04, 2024 in Perry, Iowa. Dan Marburger, the beloved principal who was shot while trying to protect students, died 10 days after the shooting. (Photo by
"Our entire state is devastated by the news of Dan Marburger’s death," Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds said in a prepared statement. "Kevin and I offer our deepest condolences to his wife and family as we pray for their comfort during this very difficult time. Dan courageously put himself in harm’s way to protect his students, and ultimately gave his own life to save them. He will forever be remembered for his selfless and heroic actions. May he rest in peace."
Reynolds ordered all flags in Iowa to be lowered to half-staff on Sunday and remain at half-staff until sunset on the day of Marburger’s funeral and internment.
The state Department of Public Safety said Dan Marburger acted selflessly and placed himself in harm’s way in an apparent effort to protect his students."
Community members gather in Wiese park for a candlelight vigil following the morning shooting at the Perry Middle School and High School complex on January 04, 2024 in Perry, Iowa. Dan Marburger, the beloved principal who was shot while trying to pro
His daughter, Claire Marburger called her father a "gentle giant" and said it wasn’t surprising that her father tried to protect his students.
"As I heard of a gunman, I instantly had a feeling my Dad would be a victim as he would put himself in harms way for the benefit of the kids and his staff," his daughter wrote in a Facebook post the day after the shooting. "That’s just Dad."
Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation spokesman Mitch Mortvedt said Marburger, who has been principal since 1995, did some "pretty significant things" to protect others during the shooting. Clark Wicks, the Perry school district’s superintendent, said Marburger was a "hero" who intervened with Butler so students could escape.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.