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Captain James Gregory Cutter is the commanding officer aboard the UNSC Spirit of Fire CFV-88. Though he is a very capable battle tactician, he is better used as a logistics officer. Once offered command of the UNSC destroyer Prophecy, he refused in order to command the colonization vessel, Spirit of Fire. When the Covenant War broke out, Cutter was handpicked by Admiral Preston Cole to helm the Spirit of Fire in the ship's new role as central of repair, supply, and forward deployment operations for Battle Group D. Captain James Cutter is a devout family man and has a wife and kids waiting for him at home.

Cutter was an officer from the start, but his demeanor was never one of a do-nothing officer like a number of his class. Many of the young men had political aspirations far beyond their potential, but Cutter found it more interesting "talking-shop" in the soldier's club with the non-officers. That's not to say that Cutter disliked his fellow officers, it was just his approach to "get to know and respect" his men in order to achieve 200 percent effort from them when the time came.

This approach has its good and and bad sides. Cutter has served on seven ships, two of them as captain, and has a record of service and bravery that were well know with the fleet; but it was his lack of political ambition, his unwillingness to climb the ladder of the UNSC by stepping over others, that had kept him from far more. He could very well have been an admiral, if he had ever cared to be.

Cutter was selected for the Spirit of Fire, being the only man they wanted for the job. Where some would have seen this as a very unpropitious job - being the supply boat of the fleet, running a three-mile 11,000-person juggernaut that always had an assignment with more missions waiting in the wings - Cutter found that it was something that made him smile behind his morning coffee.

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