In the Nashville episode “How Can I Help You Say Goodbye,” Deacon Claybourne (Charles Esten) is overwhelmed with guilt as his sister Beverly O’Connor becomes brain-dead following her second aneurysm. He believes there’s a chance Beverly will wake up (“she’s been hooked up to machines before” he tells the unconvinced doctor.) But Beverly’s fate is not up to Deacon. Before the surgery, Beverly signed over medical power of attorney to her daughter Scarlett (Clare Bowen). Of course Scarlett is surprised. Beverly has treated Scarlett like a regret her whole life. Now Scarlett is forced to make the painful decision of whether or not to keep her mother on life support. Was leaving the decision up to Scarlett a gesture of trust on Beverly’s behalf? Or was it Beverly’s way of coming down on Scarlett just one more time?
Beverly is portrayed by Dana Wheeler-Nicholson. She’s been on a ton of TV shows including Seinfeld (Shelly, Elaine’s friend from art class), The X-Files (Det. Angela White), Sex and the City (Laney Berlin), and Boston Legal. But she’s best known for her recurring role on Friday Night Lights (Angela Collette) and All My Children (Ilene Pringle). Chevy Chase fans will recognize Wheeler-Nicholson from the 1985 funny film Fletch (his leading lady, Gail Stanwyk). Nashville airs Wednesdays at 10pm on ABC.