‘DWTS’ Underdog Bill Engvall Tells All: Comedian Courageously Kicked Drinking Problem

by | November 20, 2013 at 3:09 PM | Dancing With The Stars, Interview, TV News

"DWTS": Bill and Emma (Photo: ABC)

On Monday night’s “Dancing with the Stars,” the remaining five celebrities revealed emotional personal stories about their lives.

None was more moving than Bill Engvall’s revelation that he had kicked a drinking problem to become a family man devoted to wife Gail and their kids.

Surprisingly, Bill told xfinityTV after the show that it wasn’t hard to speak about the sensitive issue on camera. He admitted while performing in various cities as a comedian, he had once turned to alcohol.

“It came up that when I was younger and on the road I had a drinking problem and as I said in the [TV] package, I had to ‘man up’ and with God’s help I got through it and I was blessed with a wonderful woman who didn’t jump ship on me and that’s why it’s one of those things in your life, I look back, it wasn’t in the package, but I said, ‘I don’t know what I’ve done right in my life that God’s given me this wonderful wife and wonderful family and career and friends. Whatever it is, though, I’m not going to look back.’”

Watch Bill and Emma’s Reactions as They Are Saved Yet Again on “DWTS”:

The “Blue Collar” comedian, who has ridden his underdog fan support all the way to next week’s “DWTS” season finale with partner Emma Slater, admitted of his drinking problem, “It’s something I had to get hold of and I did and I’m proud of that. And, [I want to say] to anyone out there, you can beat it.”

When asked how bad things got, Bill confided, “It was pretty bad. It wasn’t to the point where I was sleeping in a gutter. [But] it was bad enough that there were nights I would sit on the edge of the bed and look at the phone and know that I had to call home and [Gail] would know the minute I would start talking. That was not a good feeling to know that she was raising two babies and I’m out boozing it up because I couldn’t handle the road.

“DWTS”: Secret to Bill Engvall’s Success Revealed?

“I was crying,” Bill said about watching his Monday “DWTS” segment that paid tribute to his wife’s strength. “This girl has been through so much with me and this career and what I’ve done and to have her there every week [at 'DWTS'] and to hear her crying, I really had to suck it up because I started looking up, [thinking] ‘I’ve got to get into this dance.’”

Bill and Emma performed one of their best received dances yet with a smooth Argentine tango the judges thought was technically solid as well as crowd-pleasing.

But who cares about the judges when you have the fan votes! After besting Leah Remini, who was in the bottom two with him, Bill shrugged to reporters about his teaming with Emma, “I don’t even know what to think anymore. I just keep banging the same drum. We just keep moving on.”

“Dancing with the Stars” airs Mondays at 8/7c on ABC.