Battle of Vella Gulf World War II

The U.S. destroyer Sterett.


The Battle of Vella Gulf was a naval battle of the Pacific campaign of World War II fought on the night of 6–7 August 1943, in Vella Gulf between Vella Lavella Island and Kolombangara Island in the Solomon Islands of the Southwest Pacific.

This engagement was the first time that American destroyers were allowed to operate independently of the American cruiser force during the Pacific campaign. In the battle, six American destroyers engaged four Japanese destroyers attempting to reinforce Japanese troops on Kolombangara. The American warships closed the Japanese force undetected with the aid of radar and fired torpedoes, sinking three Japanese destroyers with no damage to American ships.