John Lang, Founder Of Canada’s 1st Cruise-Only Agency Dies At 75

Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw

John Lang

Lang cruises on Georgian Bay in 1962

John Robert Lang, 75, founder of The Cruise People, Ltd in Toronto, described as Canada’s first cruise-only travel agency, died last week after a short illness.

Lang was born in Toronto in July 1942 and after a decade of teaching, and taking groups cruising on Georgian Bay in the summer time, he founded The Cruise People, Ltd, as Canada’s first cruise-only travel agency in 1972.

He was that company’s president for forty-five years and also became a director of The Cruise People Ltd in London, England, when a former client of his opened the UK affiliate in 1992.

During his career, as well as booking thousands of happy people on cruises and being a reliable source for writers and authors, Lang supported many causes and was a rail fan too. Maritime causes he supported included the mail ship RMS Segwun on the Muskoka Lakes and repatriating the Canadian Pacific Great Lakes steamship s.s. Keewatin from the U.S. to Georgian Bay in 2012.

In March 2014, when other people would have been contemplating retirement, Lang joined Expedia Cruise Ship Centers, where he was able to continue his calling to the cruise industry by doing so from home.

Lang is survived by his wife Diana, co-founder of The Cruise People, Ltd, his daughter Fiona, who also worked with the company, and son-in-law Colin.

Bruce Parkinson

Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief

An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.

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