Erland Nils Herfindahl was born March 7, 1980 in Starbuck, MN, the son of Hege and Grant Herfindahl. He grew up on the family farm north of Benson. He loved the farm, where he cared for a lot of animals; chickens, turkeys and pigs. He was a sunny and happy child, easy to be around. Every summer he would join his family in Norway, so growing up, he was fluent in two languages.