After shakedown and local operations along the East Coast, Ingraham commenced duties as convoy escort in December 1941 as the Japanese surprise attack drew America into the fight for freedom. During 1942 she escorted convoys between the United States, Iceland and the United Kingdom, bringing supplies desperately needed by the Allies to stem Hitler’s advance and to take the offensive. Under constant threat from German U-boats, Ingraham continued her escort duty to Europe and as far south as the Panama Canal.
On the night of 22 August, as she was investigating a collision between destroyer Buck and a merchant vessel, Ingraham collided with oiler Chemung in heavy fog off the coast of Nova Scotia and sank almost immediately. Depth charges on her stern exploded. Only 11 men survived the collision. She was struck from the Navy Register 11 September 1942.