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Westerners, Asians from all walks of life among Mumbai victims

  • Story Highlights
  • NEW: Two Canadians, yachting tycoon, sister of Bollywood actor among dead
  • Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, wife Rivka confirmed dead at Chabad House in Mumbai
  • Virginians Alan Scherr and daughter Naomi Scherr killed, family member says
  • Anti-Terrorism Squad chief killed in offensive, CNN sister network CNN-IBN says
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(CNN) -- They were fathers and daughters, tycoons and spiritualists, Westerners and Asians, who were in Mumbai for different reasons. But they met the same fate in the indiscriminate path of gunfire and explosions in a string of terror attacks across the Indian city this week.

Antonio Di Lorenzo was among the victims in the attacks, Italy's foreign affairs minister said.

Kia Scherr, left, has told CNN that her husband, Alan Scherr, and daughter Naomi were killed in Mumbai.

At least 183 people were killed this week in attacks on several high-traffic landmarks, many of which tourists frequent. Their deaths have torn families and communities apart, and many more have yet to be confirmed.

Small snapshots of the victims have begun to emerge, most of them pertaining to foreigners. Limited reports have circulated about victims from India.

A father and daughter from a Virginia meditation group were among five Americans confirmed dead, the U.S. State Department said Friday.

Kia Scherr told CNN on Friday that her husband, Alan, 58, and daughter, Naomi, 13, were killed.

She said she knew her husband and daughter were dining at the Oberoi, a Mumbai hotel, when gunfire broke out Wednesday night. Scherr said she last spoke to them Thursday. Video Watch friends tell the story of the Scherrs' visit to Mumbai »

The father and daughter had been in India since November 17 and were due to leave Monday, Scherr said.

A spokeswoman for The Synchronicity Foundation, a meditation group based near Charlottesville, Virginia, said the two were among 25 members of the group who were visiting India.

The other Synchronicity people who were staying at the Oberoi "are accounted for and safe," the group's Web site said.

Hemant Karkare, Anti-Terrorism Squad chief for Maharashtra state, was among at least 16 members of Indian law enforcement officers killed in the attacks. Mumbai is in Maharashtra.

Karkare was leading an offensive against gunmen late Wednesday when he was shot three times in the chest, CNN sister network CNN-IBN reported.

Karkare, who joined the Indian Police Service in 1982, became ATS chief in January after spending seven years in Austria at the Research and Analysis Wing, Indian's external foreign intelligence agency, according to CNN-IBN.

Five hostages, including a rabbi and his wife, were killed in a standoff at the Chabad House, said Rabbi Zalman Shmotkin, a spokesman for Chabad-Lubavitch International in the United States. Video Watch: Rabbi and wife killed in Mumbai »

Rabbi Gavriel Noach Holtzberg, the city's envoy for the community, and his wife, Rivka, had been held hostage at the Chabad House, known as the Nariman House in Mumbai. The building houses the Mumbai headquarters of the Chabad community, a Hasidic Jewish movement.

Gavriel Holtzberg, 29, was born in Israel and moved to Brooklyn, New York, with his parents when he was 9. Rivka, 28, was a native of Afula, Israel, the organization said. Video Watch the Chabad community in New York react »

The Holtzbergs arrived in Mumbai in 2003 to serve the Jewish community there, Chabad-Lubavitch International said.

"As emissaries to Mumbai, Gabi and Rivky gave up the comforts of the West in order to spread Jewish pride in a corner of the world that was a frequent stop for throngs of Israeli tourists," said Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, vice chairman of Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, the educational arm of Chabad-Lubavitch, in a statement.

Gavriel Holtzberg made a phone call to the Israeli Consulate to report that gunmen were in his house, the organization said.

"In the middle of the conversation, the line went dead," the organization said. It did not say when the phone call took place.

A cook at the center, who had barricaded herself in a room, grabbed the couple's son and escaped with another person, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported.

The boy's 2nd birthday is Saturday, said Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, chairman of the Educational and Social Services arms of the Chabad-Lubavitch Movement.

"Today, he became an orphan," Krinsky said at a news conference in New York. Video Watch as Krinsky vows the Chabad community will raise the child »

The couple's other child was not in Mumbai at the time and is safe, Krinsky said.

Among others confirmed dead:

  • Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs confirmed that two Canadians had died in the attacks but did not elaborate on their identities. Lawrence Cannon said that 20 Canadians in the "unsafe hotels" had been accounted for.
  • Boris Rego, 25, a management trainee at the Taj Mahal hotel, was killed Thursday, his relatives told CNN-IBN. Kevin Rego said that he last spoke to his brother on the phone Thursday afternoon, CNN's sister network reported.
  • Mumbai police Additional Commissioner Ashok Kamote and Vijay Salaskar, also of the Mumbai police, were killed in clashes at the Metro Cinema, CNN-IBN reported.
  • British yacht magnate Andreas Liveras was pronounced dead in a hospital hours after he placed a call to the British Broadcasting Corp. from a crowded basement in the Taj Mahal hotel, the news agency reported. The duty officer of the Cypriot minister of foreign affairs confirmed that Liveras, who was born in Cyprus, died in the attacks. Liveras was in Mumbai on business for his Monaco-based luxury charter company, Liveras Yachts.
  • Japanese businessman Hisashi Tsuda was shot to death in the lobby of the Oberoi as he was checking in Wednesday night, Masakazu Sato, president of Mitsui Marubeni Liquefied Gas, said Thursday in Tokyo, according to media reports. The father of two died at a hospital after he was shot in the leg, chest and abdomen, The Daily Yomiuri reported.
  • Australian Brett Gilbert Taylor, 49, also was gunned down Wednesday, a spokesman for his country's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said Friday. Taylor, who owned a small business, was staying at the Oberoi with colleagues from a New South Wales trade delegation, the Australian Broadcast Corp. reported.
  • The family of Douglas Markell of New South Wales, Australia, also confirmed that Markell had died in the attacks, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said in an e-mail.
  • Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Franco Frattini expressed condolences to the family of Antonio Di Lorenzo, who was killed in the attacks, Frattini said in a statement on his Web site.
  • The founder of a French clothing company, Loumia Hiridjee, and her husband, Mourad Amarsay, were killed Wednesday, according to the French Embassy in Washington. Hiridjee, founder of the Princess Tam Tam lingerie and clothing line, was born in Madagascar to Indian traders and moved to France in 1972 to attend boarding school.
  • German television producer Ralph Burkei was confirmed dead Thursday, a spokesman for the German foreign service said. Burkei was co-owner of the Bavarian production company, C.A.M.P. TV, and a one-time vice president of the TSV 1860 Munich football team.
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  • Monica Chhabaria, sister of Bollywood actor Asish Chaudhury, and her husband were killed Wednesday in a restaurant at the Oberoi, CNN-IBN reported.
  • The husband of Singaporean hostage Lo Hoei Yen identified his wife's body Friday night, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on its Web site. The ministry said it is assisting the family and will ensure the safe return of the body upon the Indian authorities' release.
  • CNN's Zain Verjee and Emanuella Grinberg contributed to this report.

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