Fabrizia DiLorenzo.
Fabrizia DiLorenzo.Handout/Boston Globe

“The certainty is better than the uncertainty,’’ Philip Frattaroli said.

Frattaroli was speaking on behalf of his Boston family after officials confirmed Thursday that a first cousin, 31-year-old Fabrizia DiLorenzo, was among the 12 people killed in the terrorist attack on a Christmas market in Berlin.

Frattaroli said the loss of his cousin has devastated the family in the North End, where the Frattaroli family runs several restaurants, and in Italy, where DiLorenzo grew up and where her parents and siblings still live.

“They are devastated,’’ he said of his Italian relatives, with whom the Boston branch remains close despite the physical distance from Italy.


German authorities are looking for a Tunisian man identified as Anis Amri, who had sought refugee status but was denied it, according to the Associated Press. German authorities were seeking to deport him for six months before the attack, the AP reported.

Frattaroli said the alleged involvement of someone once involved in the refugee process was deeply upsetting to the DiLorenzo’s family because she was a compassionate person who envisioned a more peaceful world.

Among her final posts on social media, he noted, was her endorsement of a German professor’s argument that the most effective way to defeat Islamic terrorism is by accepting refugees from the Mideast who can then learn about Western society in a positive manner.

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Monday night attack that also left dozens hurt.

“It’s just terrible that evil and hatred has to be the reason she was killed,’’ Frattaroli said. “She had dedicated her life in so many ways to international issues and cooperation’’ among nations.

He added, “what happened to her was the opposite of everything she believed in.’’

Frattaroli said DiLorenzo was confirmed as one of the 12 victims through a DNA profile that German authorities developed with the help of her relatives. He said the family is still reeling from her death and has not had a chance to map out funeral services yet.


DiLorenzo, who had been living in Germany, was buying gifts as she prepared to return for Christmas to the city of Sulmona, her home east of Rome. Her phone and other belongings were discovered at the scene in Berlin.

Frattaroli — whose extended family owns eight area restaurants, including Artu and Lucia Ristorante — said he knew DiLorenzo well from visits every other year to the ancestral home in Sulmona. DiLorenzo is the daughter of his father’s first cousin, Frattaroli said.

“It’s just terrible,’’ he said. “She had a bright future taken from her – and the rest of the world.’’

John R. Ellement can be reached at ellement@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe.com