Attack in San Pedro Bay
On October 14, Sonoma sailed in company with echelon L1, as Task Unit 78.2.9, bound ultimately for the Leyte invasion. Sonoma entered San Pedro Bay, Leyte Gulf, on the 20th. On the morning of the 24th, she opened fire on several enemy planes with her starboard guns. As she cast off from merchant freighter Augustus Thomas, next to whom she had been moored, a flaming enemy bomber crashed Sonoma on the starboard side amidships. Two explosions followed immediately, and she began taking water at an alarming rate. LCI-72 and Chickasaw (ATF-83) came alongside the stricken tug, extinguished the fires on her starboard side, and removed casualties. Chickasaw then made an unsuccessful attempt to beach her on Dio Island. That afternoon, Sonoma sank in 18 feet of water off Dio Island.