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Dan Cody is Gatsby's "Role Model" when Gatsby first got out of the war he was poor and Dan Cody taught him how to make a living and not be homeless and stuff like that anymore
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This is a good question, because Dan Cody is a man that set Gatsby's life on a certain trajectory.
According to the novel, Gatsby went to college, but because he grew up on a poor farm, he had to work his way through school. He worked as a janitor. He could not put up with the humiliation of this, so he left. Instead, he worked on Lake Superior fishing and digging clams.
One day he met Dan Cody, a wealthy man on a boat. Gatsby warned Cody of an impending storm. This was when the two became friends. Also Gatsby became Cody's personal assistant. When Cody died, he left Gatsby a large sum of money, $25,000, but Cody's mistress did not allow Gatsby to have it.
Gatsby at this point set himself to make money, and money he did make. Part of his ability to make money was on account of the time he spend with Dan Cody. From this perspective, we can say that Gatsby would have not been the Great Gatsby without the "Great" Cody.
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