CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- An overflow crowd attended a neighborhood watch meeting Saturday in Pinch, following two home invasions in the area that have left residents on edge.
Frank Mace, 59, a lifelong Pinch resident, hopes the community meetings will eventually help him feel safe again.
On Thursday, he fought off two men who tried to break into his home.
Later that day, police found a severely injured 74-year-old woman lying on the floor of her home not far from where Mace lives near Miller Drive. Her home had been ransacked, according to a Kanawha County sheriff's deputy, who said on Friday that the woman was still in serious condition.
No arrests have been made and police are investigating if the two incidents are related.
"A little after midnight, my doorbell rang," Mace, a retired principal at Cedar Grove Elementary School, recalled.
At first glance, Mace thought the two men were his grandsons and started to open the door. However, he quickly noticed something was wrong, as scarves covered half of the men's faces.
"I knew their intent was to do something bad," Mace said. "They kept kicking the door and it came back and hit me in my head -- that's how I got the laceration and black eye."
Mace situated himself on the floor throwing all of his weight against the door and was able to keep it from opening, even after the men tried to pry it with a crow bar.
"During the whole ordeal, I was bleeding profusely," he said. "I pushed with all my might and started thinking about my grandchildren.
"I thought, 'I'm not going to die a tragic death, I'm going to fight with all my might and keep them out of this house.'"
Eventually, the men stopped pushing. Mace thought they were going to regroup before trying again, but was able to secure the deadbolt and grab his phone in the meantime.