Iowa school shooting: Principal Don Marburger dies of injuries in Perry High School shooting

Scott Morgan/Reuters

Law enforcement officers work at the scene of a shooting at Perry High School in Perry, Iowa, on January 4, 2024.


Who is an Iowa president? He acted bravely Perry's wife says he died of his injuries in an attack to save students during the shooting at Perry High School earlier this month.

A school shooting near Des Moines initially left a sixth-grader dead and seven others, including principal Don Marburger, were injured when a 17-year-old student opened fire on Jan. 4.

“On January 14th, around 8:00 p.m., Don lost his battle,” his wife, Elizabeth Marburger, posted in a post. GoFundMe campaign It was set while he was in the hospital. “He fought hard and gave us 10 days to treasure forever.”

The attack marked the second shooting School property in America Within the first few days of 2024.

Marburger, who authorities say was shot multiple times, was hailed a hero after trying to distract students by talking to the gunman during the brutal attack, his daughter Claire Marburger shared on social media. Shortly after the shooting.

“When I heard about a gunman, I immediately felt that my father would be the victim for the sake of the children and his staff. “It's not entirely surprising to hear that he approached Dylan and tried to talk him down, distracting him enough that some students left the cafeteria,” Marburger's daughter said.

Alison Ullman/The Perry Chief/USA TODAY NETWORK

Principal Dan Marburger speaks at the Perry High School graduation ceremony on Sunday, May 28, 2023.

The Iowa Department of Public Safety said Marburger “acted selflessly and put himself in harm's way in an apparent effort to protect his students.”

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Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff on Sunday.

“Our entire state is devastated by the news of Don Marburger's death. Kevin and I send our deepest condolences to his wife and family, and we pray for their comfort during this difficult time,” Reynolds said in a statement.

“Don bravely put himself in harm's way to protect his students and ultimately gave his life to save them. He will forever be remembered for his selfless and heroic actions. May he rest in peace.”

According to the Perry Community School District, Marburger worked in schools in Perry, Iowa, for at least 25 years.

Officers responded within minutes of the first Thursday shooting of the year. They later found the gunman with a self-inflicted gunshot wound, CNN previously reported.

The Perry Middle School student killed in the shooting has been identified as 11-year-old Ahmir Jolliffe, who was shot three times in the attack, authorities said.

This story has been updated with additional information.

CNN's Elizabeth Wolff, Raja Razek, Holly Yan, Ashley R. Williams, Andy Rose, Dakin Anton, Evan Perez and Christina Maksoris contributed to this report.

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