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The dead parachutist is symbolic of the "beast" the boys fear. The boys fear a beast that is mythical in nature, yet the discovery of the corpse puts their fears in a physical form.
Previously the beast was not a fleshed out figure to the boys. Whatever fears each boy might have had created their own personal idea of what the beast was.
Because the parachutist obviously experienced a violent and tragic death it also is symbolic of what the boys fear most. The rotting corpse is symbolic of the rotting away of civility and order on the island.
For short it means the fall of mankind.
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