R.I.P. Doug Grindstaff, designer of Star Trek's iconic sound effects

The sound effects guru gave us communicator bleeps, Tribble purrs and whooshing bridge doors.

Take away the images — strip out the dialogue, even — and you could recognize Star Trek from its sounds alone. The ambient pings, beeps, alarms, whirrs and whooshes of the Enterprise helped make the future seem so real. Much of that sound was the work of Doug Grindstaff, who along with Jack Finlay and Joseph Sorokin, created the background noise heard on Star Trek: The Original Series.

Grindstaff recorded his squeaking tennis shoes to craft the sound of the automatic doors on the U.S.S. Enterprise. He designed the beeps of the communicators, the trilling medical scanners and the dove-like cooing of the Tribbles. For that work, he was nominated for an Emmy in Individual Achievements in Film and Sound Editing in 1967. He would go on to win five Emmy trophies, for his work on shows such as Police Story and Max Headroom.

Grindstaff's sound work can also be heard on MeTV series Mannix, The Odd Couple and The Brady Bunch. He would go on to become the president of the Motion Picture Sound Editors, an organization that granted him its Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998.

Only July 23, Grindstaff passed away at the age of 87, according to a report released by his family to The Hollywood Reporter.

People we have lost in 2018

  • Burt Reynolds of 'Smokey and the Bandit' and 'Gunsmoke'
  • Ken Berry, star of 'Mama's Family' and 'Mayberry R.F.D.'
  • Charlotte Rae, Mrs. Garrett of 'The Facts of Life'
  • Harry Anderson of 'Night Court' and 'Cheers'
  • David Ogden Stiers, M*A*S*H star and Disney voice actor
  • Steven Bochco, creator of 'Hill Street Blues' and 'NYPD Blue'
  • John Mahoney, the beloved father of 'Frasier'
  • Stan Lee, co-creator of Spider-Man and the Incredible Hulk
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  • Bill Daily, the comedic neighbor of 'The Bob Newhart Show'
  • Robin Leach, host of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous
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  • Roy Clark, country music icon and 'Hee Haw' host
  • Neil Simon, playwright of 'The Odd Couple' and more
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  • Mickey Jones of 'Home Improvement' and 'National Lampoon's Vacation'
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  • Billy Ray Latham, The Country Boys banjo player from 'The Andy Griffith Show'
  • Dean Webb, The Darling Boys mandolin player on The Andy Griffith Show
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  • Harry Landers, co-star on 'Ben Casey' and many beloved TV shows
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  • Patrick Williams, Emmy-winning TV composer
  • Burt Reynolds of 'Smokey and the Bandit' and 'Gunsmoke'
  • Ken Berry, star of 'Mama's Family' and 'Mayberry R.F.D.'
  • Charlotte Rae, Mrs. Garrett of 'The Facts of Life'
  • Harry Anderson of 'Night Court' and 'Cheers'
  • David Ogden Stiers, M*A*S*H star and Disney voice actor
  • Steven Bochco, creator of 'Hill Street Blues' and 'NYPD Blue'
  • John Mahoney, the beloved father of 'Frasier'
  • Stan Lee, co-creator of Spider-Man and the Incredible Hulk
  • Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul whose hits soundtracked our lives
  • Bill Daily, the comedic neighbor of 'The Bob Newhart Show'
  • Robin Leach, host of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous
  • Clint Walker, the towering star of 1950s Western 'Cheyenne'
  • Roy Clark, country music icon and 'Hee Haw' host
  • Neil Simon, playwright of 'The Odd Couple' and more
  • Chuck McCann, children's television host and the voice of
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  • Mickey Jones of 'Home Improvement' and 'National Lampoon's Vacation'
  • Harlan Ellison, the sci-fi writer behind the greatest Star Trek episode
  • Margot Kidder, best known as Lois Lane of 'Superman'
  • Vic Damone, legendary singer, popular entertainer and TV host
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  • Deanna Lund, a.k.a. Valerie Scott on 'Land of the Giants,' Anna Gram on 'Batman'
  • Jean Porter, actress from 'The Abbott & Costello Show'
  • Harry Landers, co-star on 'Ben Casey' and many beloved TV shows
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  • Frank Buxton, writer, actor and director on 'The Odd Couple,' 'Happy Days'
  • Greta Thyssen, actress on 'The Three Stooges' and 'Perry Mason'
  • Tim O'Connor of 'Peyton Place,' 'Buck Rogers' and 'Wonder Woman'
  • Bradford Dillman, prominent '60s and '70s film and TV actor
  • Tom Reese, TV and movie actor known for amazing fistfights
  • Ralph Woolsey, the man who gave 'Batman' its bold, distinctive look
  • Soon-Tek Oh, memorable character actor on 'M*A*S*H,' 'Charlie's Angels,' 'Hawaii Five-O'
  • Georgann Johnson, actress whose career spanned five decades in TV and movies
  • Eunice Gayson, the first Bond girl and guest star on 'The Saint'
  • Frank Avruch, best known as Boston's Bozo the Clown
  • Jerry Maren, the last surviving Munchkin from 'The Wizard of Oz'
  • William Phipps, prolific actor who voiced Prince Charming
  • Frank Doubleday, classic TV bad guy and villain from Escape From New York
  • Allyn Ann McLerie of 'The Tony Randall Show'
  • Barbara Dodd Remsen, classic TV actress and notable casting director
  • Tim Rossovich, NFL star turned TV tough guy and character actor
  • Wright King of 'The Twilight Zone' and 'Wanted: Dead or Alive'
  • Peggy McCay, prolific TV actress who played Andy Taylor's high school flame
  • John Gavin, 'Psycho' actor who was twice almost cast as James Bond
  • Eddie Foy III, actor turned casting director on all your favorite shows
  • Nokie Edwards, lead guitarist for surf-rock icons The Ventures
  • Kitty O'Neil, 'Wonder Woman' stunt double
  • Ken Swofford, actor who appeared on 'Gunsmoke,' 'Columbo' and more
  • Frank Parker, soap star who got his start playing Gomer Pyle's biggest bully
  • Peter Donat, who played both Mannix villain and Agent Mulder's father
  • Carole Shelley of The Odd Couple's Pigeon Sisters
  • Fredd Wayne, character actor who played Benjamin Franklin on TV
  • Patricia Benoit, the bride in television's first big event wedding
  • David Landsberg of 'C.P.O. Sharkey'
  • Tab Hunter, actor and singer behind the early rock hit
  • Roger Perry of 'The Facts of Life,' 'Star Trek' and more
  • Bill Loud, patriarch from the pioneering PBS documentary 'An American Family'
  • Bob Dorough, Schoolhouse Rock! composer
  • Miriam Nelson, choreographer of classic TV dance scenes
  • Doug Grindstaff, designer of Star Trek's iconic sound effects
  • Patrick Williams, Emmy-winning TV composer

Burt Reynolds of 'Smokey and the Bandit' and 'Gunsmoke'

The beloved actor passed away at the age of 82. READ MORE

Ken Berry, star of 'Mama's Family' and 'Mayberry R.F.D.'

The dancing sitcom actor was 85. READ MORE

Image: AP Photo

Charlotte Rae, Mrs. Garrett of 'The Facts of Life'

Former co-stars paid tribute to the beloved Diff'rent Strokes and Facts of Life actress. She was 92. READ MORE

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David Ogden Stiers, M*A*S*H star and Disney voice actor

The actor behind "Winchester" died at the age of 75. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Steven Bochco, creator of 'Hill Street Blues' and 'NYPD Blue'

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Image: AP PHOTO / NICK UT

John Mahoney, the beloved father of 'Frasier'

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Image: AP Photo / Reed Saxon

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Image: The Everett Collection

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul whose hits soundtracked our lives

The singer also appeared on the series Room 222. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Bill Daily, the comedic neighbor of 'The Bob Newhart Show'

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Image: The Everett Collection

Robin Leach, host of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

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Image: The Everett Collection

Clint Walker, the towering star of 1950s Western 'Cheyenne'

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Roy Clark, country music icon and 'Hee Haw' host

The television and recording star was 85. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Neil Simon, playwright of 'The Odd Couple' and more

the legendary playwright passed away at the age of 91. READ MORE

Image: AP Photo

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The 'Far Out Space Nuts' and 'Captain Kangaroo' actor was 83. READ MORE

Hugh Wilson, creator of 'WKRP in Cincinnati,' 'Frank's Place'

The Emmy-winning writer passed away on January 14 at 74. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Mickey Jones of 'Home Improvement' and 'National Lampoon's Vacation'

On February 7, Mickey Jones passed away at the age of 76. READ MORE

Harlan Ellison, the sci-fi writer behind the greatest Star Trek episode

The author won a Hugo Award for his script for "City on the Edge of Forever." READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Margot Kidder, best known as Lois Lane of 'Superman'

The actress passed away at the age of 69. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Vic Damone, legendary singer, popular entertainer and TV host

On February 11, the entertainer passed away at the age of 89. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Doreen Tracey, original 'Mickey Mouse Club' Mousketeer

Actress Doreen Tracey passed away January 10 at the age of 74. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Billy Ray Latham, The Country Boys banjo player from 'The Andy Griffith Show'

In scenes with Andy Griffith, the star's eyes were glued to Latham's pro picking. READ MORE

Dean Webb, The Darling Boys mandolin player on The Andy Griffith Show

His memorable picking made him one of Mayberry's most darling faces. READ MORE

Peter Wyngarde, British actor who appeared in 'The Prisoner,' 'Flash Gordon' and a Lucy special

He was one of the men who inspired Austin Powers. READ MORE

Michele Carey, model-turned-actress of 'Gunsmoke' and 'The Wild, Wild West'

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Elmarie Wendel of 'Third Rock from the Sun'

The Mrs. Dubcek portrayer passed away at 89. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Celeste Yarnall, Star Trek actress and '70s scream queen

The actress passed away on October 7 at the age of 74. READ MORE

Dorothy Malone, Oscar-winning actress and 'Peyton Place' star

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Image: The Everett Collection

Robert Dowdell of 'Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea'

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Image: The Everett Collection

Robert Wolders, 'Laredo' star and longtime partner of Audrey Hepburn

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Image: The Everett Collection

Wayne Maunder, star of 'Custer' and 'Lancer'

The 1960s Western actor was 80 years old. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Deanna Lund, a.k.a. Valerie Scott on 'Land of the Giants,' Anna Gram on 'Batman'

The actress passed away at the age of 81. READ MORE

Jean Porter, actress from 'The Abbott & Costello Show'

The '40s and '50s starlet passed away at the age of 95 on January 13. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Harry Landers, co-star on 'Ben Casey' and many beloved TV shows

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Joseph Campanella of 'Mannix,' 'The Bold and the Beautiful' and more

The accomplished actor passed away at 93. READ MORE

Frank Buxton, writer, actor and director on 'The Odd Couple,' 'Happy Days'

The multifaceted TV talent passed away on January 2 at the age of 87. READ MORE

Image: The Everett Collection

Greta Thyssen, actress on 'The Three Stooges' and 'Perry Mason'

The actress passed away on January 6 at the age of 90. READ MORE

Tim O'Connor of 'Peyton Place,' 'Buck Rogers' and 'Wonder Woman'

The prominent character actor passed away at the age of 90. READ MORE

Bradford Dillman, prominent '60s and '70s film and TV actor

We saw Dillman step into top-tier classic shows, like Wagon Train and The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, and returning for recurring roles on shows like Dr. Kildare and Court Martial. READ MORE

Tom Reese, TV and movie actor known for amazing fistfights

He famously duked it out with Elvis Presley, Wonder Woman, Mannix and more. READ MORE

Ralph Woolsey, the man who gave 'Batman' its bold, distinctive look

The Emmy-winning cinematographer was 104. READ MORE

Soon-Tek Oh, memorable character actor on 'M*A*S*H,' 'Charlie's Angels,' 'Hawaii Five-O'

The accomplished actor passed away on April 4 at the age of 85. READ MORE

Georgann Johnson, actress whose career spanned five decades in TV and movies

The prolific actress passed away on June 4 at the age of 91. READ MORE

Eunice Gayson, the first Bond girl and guest star on 'The Saint'

The English actress also starred in Svengoolie favorite 'Revenge of Frankenstein.' READ MORE

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