Tsunami victim Nate Berkus (search) last Monday gave "Oprah" (search) its biggest audience of the season — larger than even the day Oprah Winfrey gave her entire audience new cars.

According to early Nielsen estimates, "Oprah" drew over 15 million viewers.

Berkus, a Chicago-based interior designer who has been a regular on "Oprah," was vacationing with a friend, photographer Fernando Bengoechea (search), at a Sri Lankan resort when the tsunami struck.

Bengoechea is missing and is presumed dead.

The show with Berkus had been anticipated almost from the moment that the designer began giving first-hand cable television reports from the tsunami scene.

Show officials were coy about when — or even if — they'd do a show about Berkus.

But an "Oprah" producer was dispatched to Sri Lanka within about a week of the disaster to gather material.