Task Force SUGAR departed from Espiritu Santo late in the afternoon of 7 October. Its approach was uneventful, marked only by target practice on 8 October and brief antiaircraft practice that night. A position north of Rennell Island, just outside the range of enemy air search, was assumed the next day. At 11227 on the 10th the Helena and Duncan joined the formation, which became complete with the arrival of the McCalla the next day.8 On both the 9th and 10th, approaches were made,
as planned, to a 1600 position that permitted reaching the vicinity of Savo Island, at 20-25 knots, by 2300. However, air search revealed no suitable targets, and on both days the Task Force retired to the south of Rennell Island. Four planes from the force were flown to Tulagi on 10 October, to remain overnight and effect a rendezvous at 1600 on the 11th.
7 All times in this Narrative are Zone minus 11.
8 The McCalla was with the Task Force when it sortied from Espiritu Santo on the 7th, but late that night was ordered by Admiral Scott to return to Espiritu Santo to collect mail, rejoining the formation at the earliest possible date.
Last updated: May 28, 2003Transcribed and formatted by Jerry Holden for the HyperWar Foundation