In August 1942, Seminole was sent to the South Pacific in support of the Guadalcanal campaign. She was stationed at Fiji and Tongatabu until 8 October, when she moved on to Espiritu Santo, arriving on the 15th. That same day, Meredith and Vireo, towing a gasoline barge to Guadalcanal, were overwhelmed by planes from enemy carrier Zuikaku. On the 17th, Seminole was ordered to join Gwin and Grayson in searching for her survivors. The next day, a PBY led the three ships to a position where they rescued 97. Seminole took Vireo’s barge in tow and delivered it to Guadalcanal.
Over the following week, Seminole operated from nearby Tulagi. On the morning of 25 October. she was again off Guadalcanal on a routine supply run east of Lunga Point when Japanese destroyers Akatsuki, Ikazuchi and Shiratsuyu entered Ironbottom Sound on a bombardment mission. At Tulagi, destroyer-minesweepers Trever and Zane made a run for it, exiting Ironbottom Sound through Sealark Channel as the enemy destroyers gave chase, hitting Zane with a single shell before sighting Seminole and YP-284, too slow to escape. Turning south to engage, they sank the two auxiliaries; one member of Seminole’s crew was lost; two were wounded. Seminole earned one battle star for these actions.
On 23 July 1994, civilian divers located Seminole’s wreck lying on its starboard side at a depth of 110 feet, partially buried in mud.