For a few brief and terrifying moments, fear rained down on Barbara and James Harrell.
"The door bell rang," said Mrs. Harrell.
A door Barbara Harrell never opened. Trusting her instincts she chose to communicate to the teenage suspect from the inside.
"He said I want to get my ball out of your yard," Harrell said.
It sounded suspicious. At this point James Harrell, all 6 foot 4 of him and nearly 240 pounds began to investigate.
"So we walked down the sidewalk and I asked him where do you go to school. He mumbled something and I'm not really thinking," Harrell said.
Near the driveway reality hit.
"So I turned and I saw 2 guys with ski masks on. I thought it was a joke. It's brazen. It's 3 o clock in the afternoon, cars are going by and the birds are singing. They said 'we'll kill you. We want to know who's in this house," Mr. Harrell said.
"My hands were shaking," Barbara Harrell recalled as she watched it all unfold from her living room. She had loaded the couple's gun, crouched down in the bedroom and called 911. She told the operator:
"They have a gun to my husband's head' and my voice was shaking," Harrell said.
Back outside a test of wills, and a strategy in the making. They marched Harrell back to the front door.
"I said 'you guys need to walk away, don't do this," James Harrell said. "By this time I had decided to make my move once we got to the foyer."
With 3 armed gunmen behind, that's when Harrell made his move.
"I knocked on the door and I turned and grabbed the barrel of the gun. We wrestled and this guy behind him started popping off shots. So I pushed him and he fell back and they got up and ran."
James Harrell doesn't think what he did was that big of a deal, but so many people would disagree. After all, he not only saved his wife's life but his own as well.
"My husband is a hero because he protected me from anyone getting inside this house," Barbara Harrell said.
"To be frank I thought I'd be shaken but I just got mad," said James Harrell.
Mad because Harrell says investigators have an idea who the suspects are because they apparently have done this before in other areas of town. Harrell says they were obviously teenagers. For James and Barbara Harell their close encounter with danger has reinforced a stark reminder on the home front.
"The lesson is you have to be vigilant and you can't over-react. If I had over-reacted out there I would be dead," Harrell said.
The Harrells requested WSFA 12 News not report exact address but it is in an upscale neighborhood.
As of this report Montgomery Police have leads but no one in custody.