Watch CBS News

Iowa principal dies days after he "put himself in harm's way" to protect Perry High School students, officials say

Principal who protected kids during shooting dies
Iowa high school principal who shielded students during shooting dies 00:29

An Iowa principal who was shot while trying to protect students has died, Gov. Kim Reynolds said Sunday.

Principal Dan Marburger was critically wounded during the Jan. 4 attack when a 17-year-old shooter opened fire at Perry High School, officials said. A student was killed and several others were injured during the shooting. 

"Dan courageously put himself in harm's way to protect his students, and ultimately gave his own life to save them," Reynolds said. "He will forever be remembered for his selfless and heroic actions."

The principal's daughter, Claire Marburger, said in a Jan. 4 Facebook post that her father had been in surgery after the shooting. She did not elaborate on his injuries but said they had been sustained while trying to talk down the shooter

"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," she wrote. "It is absolutely zero surprise to hear he tried to approach and talk [the shooter] down and distract him long enough for some students to get out of the cafeteria. That's just Dad."

Law Enforcement Officers Investigate A Mass Shooting At Perry High School In Perry Iowa
Law enforcement officers are seen outside Perry High School after a mass shooting on Thursday, January 4, 2004, in Perry, Iowa.  Joshua Lott/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The shooter — identified as 17-year-old Dylan Butler, a student at the high school — died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, authorities said.

Marburger's family also shared news of his death on a fundraising page, noting that he'd died around 8 a.m. Sunday.

"He fought hard and gave us 10 days that we will treasure forever," his family wrote. 

Reynolds ordered flags at the State Capitol Building in Iowa to be lowered to half-staff on Sunday. They'll remain at half-staff until sunset on the day of Marburger's funeral and interment.  

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.