Naval Battle of Guadalcanal continues
14th November 1942: The Japanese navy suffers a 'crushing defeat' despite inflicting serious losses on the smaller US naval force
The broader battle off Guadalcanal continued through the 13th and 14th November as both land and carrier-based planes clashed in the area, with US planes successfully breaking through the Japanese defences to sink many of their transports. It was a battle that ranged far and wide.
But the second stage of the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal took place on the night of the 14th of November. Admiral Halsey had improvised Task Force 64, consisting of the battleships USS Washington and USS South Dakota supported by four destroyers. The Task Force ships had never operated together before. Once again when the action commenced, there was confusion as to the identity of the different ships involved.
The four US advance escort destroyers - the USS WALKE, PRESTON, BENHAM and GWIN - stumbled upon the Japanese force and came under sustained heavy fire. Only the GWIN escaped being sunk, suffering serious damage. The action report of the USS Walke1 was subsequently reconstructed as all her records went down with her: