Kurt Bendera was a Maquis fighter who served on the raider Val Jean under Chakotay until 2371. In 2371, the Val Jean and the USS Voyager were both stranded in the Delta Quadrant by the Caretaker's array. The Val Jean was destroyed by ramming a Kazon warship while fighting the Kazon-Ogla, and as a result the crew of the Val Jean, Jor included, joined the crew of the Voyager as Starfleet personnel and traveled on Voyager on its historic trek home from the Delta Quadrant. He served in the ship's engineering department.
While Bendera was still in the Alpha Quadrant, he was present when Chakotay was attacked by an angry group of miners on Telfas Prime, who "disagreed with Chakotay's sense of humor." Bendera, a complete stranger to Chakotay, backed him up and forced the miners to stand down. After Chakotay thanked Bendera, he just grinned and said "I like a good fight." The two were friends afterwards. Bendera also once saved the life of B'Elanna Torres near the Cardassian border. He was also close with fellow Maquis member Hogan. (VOY: "Alliances")
Kurt Bendera was killed in 2372 while on duty in main engineering when the ship came under attack from the Kazon-Nistrim. Chakotay arranged the memorial service and gave the eulogy at his funeral, held in the mess hall aboard Voyager.
Bendera was sadly the third crewmember lost to the Kazon. Chakotay and several other Maquis crewmembers tried to convince Voyager captain Kathryn Janeway that the violence was a sign that the ship should perhaps disregard strict Starfleet protocol and adopt some Maquis attitudes. (VOY: "Alliances")