Finally doing some work on the van. 3 weeks ago a friend came over and wanted to see the van move so we looked into the shift linkage cables exposed after taking off the center console. So the previous owner had the the cables held on with bailing wire and the same thing for the cable down below next to the transmission shift lever. The van shifts into 1st, 3rd, & 5th, so I'm thinking the other cable that goes to the back of the transmission where the second lever is might have same "fix". Of course parts for these are NLA so I'll have to figure out some parts off another vehicle that use similar set up.
The shims that hold the cables in place were missing, i replaced them with some i had at home that fit perfectly to hold one of the cables in place where the shifter is located. Did the same for one of the cables and seem to do the trick. Just need to figure out how to get 2nd, 4th & reverse back. Other than that the van definitely needs a tune up, oil change, plugs and wires done.