A sign along Highway 141 in Granger, Iowa, shows support for the neighboring community of Perry on Jan. 5, following a shooting at the Perry Middle School and High School building the previous day.
The high school principal who put himself “in harm’s way” to protect students during last week’s school shooting in Perry, Iowa, has died.
Gov. Kim Reynolds issued a statement on Dan Marburger’s death Sunday morning.
“Our entire state is devastated by the news of Dan Marburger’s death. 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,” the statement read.
Marburger’s daughter, Claire Marburger, shared a post on Facebook on Jan. 4, the day of the shooting, calling her dad a “gentle giant,” and said she wasn’t surprised her dad was a victim of the shooting because “he would put himself in harms way for the benefit of the kids and his staff.”
“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,” Claire Marburger wrote on Facebook. “That’s just Dad.”
Mitch Mortvedt, a spokesperson for the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, did not provide any specifics but told The Associated Press last week that Marburger did some “pretty significant things” to protect others during the shooting.
Clark Wicks, the superintendent for the school district, also told AP that Marburger was a “hero,” who let students escape while he intervened with the shooter.
The shooting left a sixth grader dead and five others wounded.