“Even if you have to defend yourself and you do, you don’t just walk away from it,” Russell said Thursday on Good Morning America. “The whole rest of your life is changed. It just is.”
Russell and De Caro were at an Albuquerque Motel 6 that June night when a gun-wielding attempted robber forced Russell from the couple’s car back into her room.
“I came out of the shower naked, soaking wet, shaking from the air conditioning, looking for a towel and here’s my wife flying backwards through the air,” De Caro told GMA. “[She] Lands face up on the bed with this desperado pointing a gun at her … I came out and said, ‘what the hell is going on here?’ ”
De Caro managed to get his hands on one of the guns he and his wife had on the nightstand, he said.
“Lynne was smart enough, brave enough, to understand what I was doing and slid those weapons into her purse and said, ‘maybe there’s something in here [the robber] would like,’ ” De Caro said.
He and the gunman then exchanged fire and De Caro was shot three times.
“When we talk about that night, I think about watching him … watching him be shot. Your husband, shot,” Russell told GMA. “He turns to you and he says, ‘he hit me, I’m shot.’ ”
— Lynne Russell CNNHLN (@LynneRussellCNN) October 1, 2014
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She recalled seeing the fire coming from the guns as the men exchanged shots.
“I think about it and it doesn’t go away. And I think to myself, ‘I don’t want another woman to have to go through watching her husband be shot,’ ” she said through tears. “I don’t want another woman to have to lie on a cot in a really cold … ICU.”
The gunman, Tomorio Walton, died in the shootout and his accomplice, Skyy Barrs, who allegedly gave Walton a handgun and drove him to the motel, was arrested, CNN reported.
De Caro spent several days at the University of New Mexico Hospital after the attack, NBC News reports.
He told GMA that he will undergo his fourth surgery as a result of the gun shots this week.
The couple said they are suing Motel 6 for the incident, but did not give details about the nature of the suit.
Russell anchored CNN Headline News from 1983 to 2001 in addition to being a private investigator and former Sheriff’s deputy. De Caro has worked for CNN as a reporter and previously served in a U.S. military special forces group.