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Steve Harvey loses it

Comic and daytime host breaks down over birthday surprise in viral video

By Corey Levitan Jan 23, 2013 10:50AM

Laughs are what Steve Harvey usually mines from his audiences. But only tears came during a recent episode of the comedian's syndicated TV talk show.

As a 56th birthday surprise, Harvey's producers located a couple without whose support Harvey might have gone on cleaning carpets for a living instead of entertaining millions.


Bing: More about Steve Harvey


According to Harvey, Rich and Becky Liss took him in and hired him as a carpet cleaner for their Cleveland furniture store 30 years ago. Harvey decided to become a comedian a year later, but didn't have any money to travel. So the Lisses extended about $11,000 in credit to Harvey with their travel agency.


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After hearing Rich Liss' name and voice, Harvey began slowly breaking down. After hearing the story, his studio audience followed suit.

"I love you, man," Harvey said. “I’ve been looking for you for years, man."

The segment was taped on Jan. 17 for future broadcast, according to the International Business Times, but a leaked video went viral on Monday, amassing nearly two million YouTube hits. Check it out yourself:

Harvey offered to fly the Lisses to Chicago, from their current home in Orlando, Fla., to appear on his show. No mention was made of the debt. But whoever makes those oversized checks can probably expect another printing order shortly.

Admit it: Did you cry watching this?

"Steve Harvey" runs daily in national syndication. Check your local listings.

Aug 21, 2014 12:26AM
I don't know a lot about Steve Harvey because I've lived outside the U.S. since 1992. However, I was familiar with Family Feud and caught him on that. He is very talented and an excellent entertainer. 30 years is a very long time and many of us have been helped along the way by teachers, ministers, friends, etc. Instead of speculating why Mr. Harvey didn't get in touch, take the reunion for what it is. A genuine show of gratitude and love for this couple. That was not acting. No one knows what the thoughts and intentions of another is so stop airing your ignorance and jealousy on a public forum and simply enjoy a very human moment.
Jan 30, 2013 8:36AM
Such a great story, in this world, no one makes it on their own.  There is always some one, willing to help.  These two very good human beings, saw a need and help.  This was a selfless act of genuine kindness, let's face it, they didn't have to do it! May God bless people like the Lisses'.  Who didn't see color in Steve Harvey, all they saw, that there was a need, and they could help. If more people in the U.S.  and the World, this earthly world, would be a better place for all to live.  And God would be mighty pleased!
Jan 29, 2013 6:38PM
Bring this couple on the show so people can see that we all got where we are with help from someone!!
Jan 26, 2013 5:12PM
I think he cried out of embarrassment of not paying the bill. hahahahahaha busted!!!!!!!!1
Jan 25, 2013 1:08PM
Cried?? Why?? Why didnt anyone ask the logical question............why did it take Steve Harvey 30 years to acknowledge how important they were in his career and life?  How could you make millions and not offer to locate this couple and pay them back? Not a Steve believer! Not real! 
Jan 25, 2013 12:42PM
`'`^;^`'` Angels among us. ...sniff...tearing.... Thank you, Heavenly Father. ~ God bless our unsung HEROES!! ....each and every one.
Jan 25, 2013 1:27AM
Jan 25, 2013 12:15AM
and Steve your friends from Orlando helped a great man money well invested .HAPPY  BELATED BIRTHDAY .....
Jan 25, 2013 12:05AM
wow Steve you are amazing you remind me of a man I called dad for years he also was a comedian and sharp dresser just like you his name was Steve as well. Steve Gallon aka Wildman Steve he and my mom dated for years and she traveled with him al lover doing shows he is gone home to glory but I will never forget him and miss him dearly but I get a little piece of him thru you every morning when I listen to your show Google him and order some of his material you wont be disappointed I  love you dearly a loving fan
Jan 24, 2013 11:21PM
As a child young or old we think as a child but when we grow up?? we repair our pass ,we say I love you and thank you and forgive me , but for many I just say than cast your stones when you comment . and the same same shell be unto you ten fold . trust this.....            
Jan 24, 2013 10:47PM
Wow...,the Lord is truly amazing in all lives! Pay it forward! And Happy Birthday to an honest to good REALIST! Thanks for sharing Mr. Harvey.

Jan 24, 2013 10:31PM
Did I cry?  Nope, I squalled my face off & it felt good!
Jan 24, 2013 9:47PM
I think Steve Harvey is a great human being,more people should be like him! I have a lot of respect for him,just from what I have seen. He is a mentor for all young men. I record the family feud just because of him. He brought that show back to life! I have seen his stand up,I have seen him in interviews. He is just a credit to the human race. It is like he really believes advise he gives out,not just cause he is paid for it. HAPPY BIRTHDAY STEVE
Ran up some debt and skipped out. Typical. Incidentally, I hope his protruding set of teeth are insured.
Jan 24, 2013 2:30PM
In all the years I have heard his comedy routines, I have heard him mention that he worked in the carpet cleaning business, but never heard him mention these people who have helped him.  Maybe I missed something.
Jan 24, 2013 1:54PM

Yes I cried very touching.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY STEVE!


GOD bless you Lisses.

Jan 24, 2013 1:39PM
when it's real!! it's real  he's human love u to 
Jan 24, 2013 1:37PM
when it's real it's real he is only human love u to steve
Jan 24, 2013 1:33PM
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