On Wednesday, December 8, 1993 William Z. Schanz, 70, co-founder and head of Regency Cruises, died at Bellevue Hospital Center in New York after having a stroke while working in his Manhattan office.
Born in Poland, Mr. Schanz, who was Jewish, was incarcerated in the Cracow ghetto at the age of 16. He survived the Plaszow concentration camp, worked in a slave labor factory in Moravia, and was freed by the Russians in 1945. He lived briefly in Paris and then moved to New York.
Regency operateed a six-ship fleet. Mr. Schanz entered the tour business on his arrival from Europe in 1949, first managing a travel agency.
In the 1950’s, he bought Trans Globe Travel. In 1970, Schanz established and became the president of Paquet French Cruises in North America.
In 1984, Schanz became a co-founder of Regency Cruises.