Regina Cline O’Connor, Flannery’s mother, was born in 1896 and died in 1995, at the age of 99. She lost her husband Edward at a young age. She was a widow with a 15 year old — Flannery — when Edward died, and they were living in the Cline antebellum mansion in Milledgeville. Flannery lived there until she graduated from Georgia State College for Women and set out for the Iowa Writer’s Workshop. Three years later she was back in Milledgeville and gravely ill, and Regina and Flannery moved to Andalusia Farm outside of town so that Flannery wouldn’t have to climb stairs.
Edward lived only two years after he was diagnosed with lupus; Flannery lived for fourteen, in part due to new medications and in part because of Regina’s care. She was in her 50’s when she and Flannery went to the farm, and she began running a dairy operation. When Flannery died she was nearly 70, and she went right back to town — after selling the herd and finding places for all of Flannery’s 40+ peacocks. Apparently she gave some to a Georgia retreat center, after which those who came for quiet and solitude complained mightily about the constant screeching. No word on what happened to that cohort of peacocks after the unsuccessful match.
In this picture Regina was 76 and still a beautiful woman. She is with the manager of Stone Mountain Park, to whom she had also given a cohort of peacocks.