Simon is the only boy who possesses hidden knowledge of the beast and understands that it is not a tangible creature that can be killed. After Ralph, Jack, and Roger confirm its existence, Simon climbs to the top of the mountain, where he sees the corpse of a deceased paratrooper swaying in the wind. Once Simon confirms the truth regarding the beast, he attempts to inform the boys of his significant discovery and climbs down the mountain alone in the middle of a tropical storm.
On the beach, Jack leads his group of hunters in an exciting ritual dance while the sky blackens and a severe storm threatens the island. The primitive dance even intrigues Ralph and Piggy, who participate in the chanting, dancing, and role-playing. Unfortunately, Simon runs onto the beach while the boys are in a wild, uncontrolled state of mind, and they mistake him for the beast. The group of boys quickly surround Simon and proceed to beat him to death.
Following Simon's horrific murder, his lifeless body is peacefully swept out to sea. Simon's death signifies the end of order, rationality, and logic on the island. His death highlights the extent of corruption and lack of civility among the boys. They have descended so far into savagery that there is no semblance of rational thought or sympathy among them.
Simon's death also solidifies the presence of evil on the island and the end of civilization as they know it. Ralph and Piggy's dream of establishing a civil, organized society is ruined and will never be attained. Simon's death also foreshadows Piggy's murder and Jack's plot to kill Ralph. By the end of chapter 9, the island has transformed into a desperate, hostile environment where no one is safe.