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Iowa Principal Dies; Intervened To Protect Students In Shooting

Dan Marburger, a Perry, Iowa, principal who put himself in harm’s way to protect students during a school shooting this month died Sunday. Marburger was critically injured during the Jan. 4 attack, which began in the school’s cafeteria as students were gathering for breakfast before class. An 11-year-old middle school student was killed, and six other people were injured. The 17-year-old student who opened fire also died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot. The state Department of Public Safety said Marburger “acted selflessly and placed himself in harm’s way in an apparent effort to protect his students,” reports the Associated Press.


The news that Marburger died triggered a flood of support on the Perry Facebook page with nearly 200 people posting condolences within the first hour after it was posted. Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds offered her condolences. “Our entire state is devastated by the news of Dan Marburger’s death,” she said. The principal’s daughter, Clair, called her father a “gentle giant” and said it wasn’t surprising that her father tried to protect his students. Marburger had been principal since 1995. Perry Superintendent Clark Wicks said Marburger was a “hero” who intervened with the teenage gunman so students could escape. Authorities said the suspect, Dylan Butler, had a pump-action shotgun and a small-caliber handgun.

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