"Preacher" Elwin Charles Roe was born February 26, 1916 in Ash Flat, Arkansas, the son of Dr. C.E. and Elizabeth Ducker Roe.
Graduated from high school in Viola, Arkansas and attended Harding College in Searcy, Arkansas, where he averaged 18 strikeouts per game. He was signed by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1938. Preacher's first and only major league game with the Cardinals was August 22, 1938.
Preacher Roe and Mozee Clay married on September 7, 1938 and they had two sons, Elwin C. Jr. and Tommy. Roe went on to play in the Cardinal minor league system through 1943. He was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1944 and was the opening day pitcher that year.
In 1945 he led the National League with 148 strikeouts. What followed then were several bad years with the Pirates after being knocked unconscious while coaching a girls high school basketball game for Hardy, Arkansas.