Considerable recent findings have revealed that the linear dose response for cancer risk assessment has not only
outlived its utility in predicting risk but is based on a flawed scientific foundation. The present article
characterizes this demise of a key concept of environmental risk assessment, in the framework of a figurative
obituary of a long-lived concept that has poorly served society. This obituary is intended to illustrate an
integrated mix of poignant and improper historical judgments that led to both the acceptance and ultimately the
demise of this once intellectually facile and nearly universally accepted concept.